Flag of Maine

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State of Maine
Flag of Maine.svg
Use Civil and state flag
Adopted June 16, 1909; 109 years ago (1909-06-16)
The flag flying near Freeport, Maine

The flag of the state of Maine features the state coat of arms on a blue field. In the center of the shield, a moose rests under a tall pine tree. A farmer and seaman represent the traditional reliance on agriculture and the sea by the state. The North Star represents the state motto: Dirigo ("I Lead").

There are no official colors for the coat of arms, so variations in coloration can be seen in flags from different manufacturers. The blue field, however, is specified to be the same blue as in the flag of the United States. According to the official description, the flag should have a fringe of yellow silk and should have a blue and white silk cord attached at the spearhead. These embellishments are very rarely observed.

The North American Vexillological Association conducted a survey in 2001 that ranked Maine's current flag as one of the worst in design. Amongst the 72 U.S. state, U.S. territorial and Canadian provincial flags, Maine's flag ranked 60th (13th worst).[1] NAVA criticized the unoriginality of "[state] seal on blue bed-sheet" design, which is currently used by almost half of the flags of U.S. states.

Original flag[edit]

Digital reproduction of the 1901 flag

Originally, the 1901 Maine Flag consisted of a green pine tree, Native symbol of New England and freedom, in the center, with a blue "North Star", all on a buff-colored background.[2] [3] The image to the right contains a digital reproduction of the 1901 Flag. The reproduction uses the same pine tree used in the Merchant Marine Flag of Maine. Also, the size of the tree, set to 1/3 the fly and 2/3 the hoist, is guesswork.

The Maine legislature approved the current flag on February 23, 1909.


Merchant and Marine Flag of Maine

Maine is also one of only two states with a separate ensign, which is rarely seen (the other is Massachusetts). It features symbols from the current flag and the older one, with a white field and green pine tree. The green pine tree has the seaman's anchor, and the words "MAINE" and "DIRIGO" around it.

Flag of the 20th Maine[edit]

Flag of the 20th Maine Volunteer Infantry Regiment

The flag used by the 20th Maine Volunteer Infantry Regiment during the American Civil War.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "2001 State/Provincial Flag Survey - NAVA.org" (PDF). nava.org. 
  2. ^ "Maine Flags Prior To 1909 (U.S.)". Flags of the World. Retrieved February 10, 2008. 
  3. ^ Shattuck, John W. (pseud. of W. J. Sidis). The Tribes and the States (unpublished manuscript), 1935. Chapter XIX, Section 104b. "It was about this time that the old Massachusetts rebel emblem of the Pine Tree, which was in its turn the emblem of the Penacook tribes, denoting the pine forests of New England and the type of freedom native to them, was put into use in modified form as a symbol of protest against arbitrary authority. The Pine Tree was still the emblem of the Massachusetts rebels, especially of the Okamakammesset followers; while those who indulged in the more centralized forms of protest sponsored by the Sons of Liberty in the colonies as a whole used the device in the modified form of a tall pole―the Pine Tree without its needles. These "liberty poles" played a great part in subsequent demonstrations against the authorities in America, and were later adopted as a rebel emblem in other countries." http://www.mortenbrask.com/wp-content/uploads/The-tribes-and-the-states-SIDIS.pdf

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