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History Of Durham And Its City Flag

Published on
March 28, 2013 at 10:03:00 PM PDT March 28, 2013 at 10:03:00 PM PDTth, March 28, 2013 at 10:03:00 PM PDT

The City Durham flag features four colors; royal blue, red, gold and white. Each color represents a core value or principle of Durham. The blue is for courage, red for action and progress, gold for high quality in all growth and white represents lofty ideas. The seven stars represent seven features of Durham that make the city what it is; the arts, commerce and industry, education, medicine, human relations, sports and recreation and the preservation of Durham’s heritage.


Carrot-Top Industries is proud to offer high-quality, City of Durham flags for sale that are 100% made in America. These City of Durham flags are available to city departments, businesses, residents and even tourists or Durham ex-pats! Show your pride for Durham and celebrate the values and traits that set Durham apart.


Read more about Durham’s history and culture below!


Before the city was known as Durham, it was a land where tribes like the Occaneechi and the Eno lived and farmed before the Europeans arrived. In 1849, during construction of the North Carolina Railroad, Dr. Bartlett Durham, a physician and entrepreneur, donated some of his land to the project. The railroad in return named the stop “Durham Station” in his honor. Ultimately the town that sprung up around the station became known as Durham.



 In 1865, just a few days after Robert E. Lee surrendered to Ulysses S. Grant at Appomattox courthouse, the largest surrender of Confederate soldiers took place at Bennett Place in Durham. This lead to the end of the Civil War and a prisoner of war, Washington Duke would be freed. After the war, Duke became a tobacco farmer, eventually starting a tobacco company with his sons. Ultimately the business grew in to the dominant American Tobacco Company. Washington Duke used his significant influence to bring Trinity College to Durham, donating hundreds of thousands of dollars in the late 1890s.  He insisted that women were allowed to attend, “placing them on an equal footing with men.” In 1924, to honor his dedication and generosity to the Trinity College, it was renamed Duke University.


Durham was not only home to just the American Tobacco Company, but also the home of a progressive economy for African Americans. Different from many other communities, Durham would be known as the “Black Wall Street”, where African America owned businesses provided jobs opportunities for African Americans. Among the notable businesses was the North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company, the oldest and largest African American life insurance company in the United States.


Lately Durham has put a lot of energy and resources toward revitalizing the city. Using the seven stars on its flag as a guide, Durham has become a fast growing city that is once again attracting national attention. Starting with the arts, Durham hosts more than 47 annual festivals along with an amazing performing arts center, DPAC. The American Tobacco Campus has become a hub of commerce and top quality education institutions Duke University and North Carolina Central provide the talent to fuel Durham’s growth.


If you have a chance on your next visit to North Carolina, take the time to visit Durham, with its rich history and vibrant culture.  All you need is a good view of Durham city skyline to sense the historic imprint of its humble beginnings and where it’s heading.