On June 5, 1911, the Colorado flag was formally adopted to represent the U.S. state of Colorado. It was created by Andrew Carlisle Carson. Three horizontal stripes of equal width make up the design, with the center stripe being white and the top and bottom stripes both being blue. The stripes are topped by a crimson "C" with a golden disk inside. The state's symbols are included in every part of the flag, with the colors blue and gold intended to symbolize the sky, white and red the "ruddy" earth, and white and red the state's snow-capped Rocky Mountains. Additionally, the state's gold and silver mining activities are symbolized by the white and gold parts of the flag.
Full History of the Colorado Flag
Prior to the current flag, the state flew a different official flag from 1907 to 1911. Unaware that such a flag existed, the Denver chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution decided to design their own, settling on a red and white flag with the assistance of the state's then-senator William H. Sharpley. The legislature was given this flag, but it was replaced since Carson's design was more popular. On April 25 and May 6, 1911, the Senate and House of Representatives, respectively, approved the new plan. The flag was formally accepted on June 5, 1911, after making its public debut at a parade on May 30, 1911. The legislature made additional changes on February 28, 1929, defining the precise colors used, and on March 31, 1964, defining the dimensions and placement of the letter "C" and gold disk.
With President Ulysses S. Grant's consent, Colorado became the 38th state to enter the union on August 1, 1876. Beginning in that year, a non-official flag was used, which was merely the state seal on a blue background. Before 1907, when a design integrating elements of the state seal together with the motto Nil sine numine, Latin for "Nothing without Providence or Deity," was approved, the state lacked an official flag. Only one real flag of this design was ever made, and it was never flown in a public setting, indicating its unpopularity. Instead, it was abandoned inside the Colorado State Capitol Building's custodial closet.
The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) Denver chapter meeting on November 14, 1910, is where the contemporary Colorado flag's roots can be found. The people in attendance at the meeting were ignorant that the state's flag had already been adopted three years earlier and thought it would be a good idea to create one from scratch. The DAR members established a committee, which began reviewing designs the next month. The committee ultimately opted to approve a design that featured the state seal in the center of three horizontal stripes of red, white, and red. Though the flag's design finally lost favor, state senator William H. Sharpley helped move the legislation through the legislature with relative ease. Andrew Carlisle Carson proposed a brand-new layout with vertical blue, white, and blue stripes, a red "C" with a gold disk inside it, offset slightly to the hoist side of the flag in the middle.
This design was much more well-liked by the legislature than the original idea, and on April 25, 1911, Senate Bill 118 was enacted by the Colorado Senate with "no opposition." On May 6, 1911, the Colorado House of Representatives comfortably passed the bill when it was introduced. The flag was unveiled in front of the public on May 30, 1911, as part of a Grand Army of the Republic parade. On June 5, 1911, the General Assembly formally authorized the flag, making it the new state flag of Colorado. The language of the passed legislation allowed for the usage of the flag by all citizens, allowing the design to be applied to objects other than flags.
However, neither the size of the "C" nor the precise shade of red or blue were specified by the legislature. Consequently, several flags made use of slightly different hues. The General Assembly amended the flag's definition on February 28, 1929, adding that the blue and red would match the hues of the country's flag. The size of the "C" and gold disk also varied; some designs placed the "C" entirely within the center stripe, while others placed it partially over each blue stripe. On March 31, 1964, the legislature also stipulated that the diameter of the gold disc must be equal to the width of the middle stripe in order to address this issue. This last clarification led to the creation of the current design.
Colorado State Flag Design and Symbolism
On May 6, 1911, the Colorado Senate passed Senate Bill 118, which spelled out ten distinct aspects of the flag's significance. The phrase "centennial" refers to Colorado's admission to statehood in 1876, the year of the United States' centennial, and the word "columbine," which refers to the state flower. The red letter "C" stands for all three of these things. The "Central's” gold disk stands for the state's almost 300 days of annual sunshine as well as for gold and the state's flourishing gold mining industry. The sky is symbolized by the blue stripes, while the white stripes stand in for the Rocky Mountain range's peaks, silver, and the ensuing mining industry. The blue and white stripes also stand in for the columbine flower's colors. The red color of the "C" represents the "ruddy" earth that covers much of the state's landscape, and other symbolism besides the senate bill has been highlighted. The flag is designed with a width that is "a width of two-thirds of its length," or in a 2:3 ratio. The white stripe's diameter should match that of the yellow disc, according to legislation issued in 1964, and the red letter "C" should take up two-thirds of the flag's width.
Colorado Flag Protocol
The state of Colorado and the governor's office have established regulations for when the flag may be flown at half-staff as well as protocol for a number of other scenarios. On the day of a Colorado service member's funeral, at the president's request (typically in response to a national tragedy or the death of a federal government official), or on the day of a state government official's funeral, the governor may order the flag to be lowered to half-staff alongside the American flag. On three holidays— Memorial Day (although flags are hoisted to full-staff at noon, a tradition that dates back at least to 1906), September 11, and National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day — the flag is always to be flown at half-staff. When "deemed suitable," the governor has the authority to order the flag to be lowered. The United States Flag Code specifies that the flag must always be flown to the right of and beneath the national flag.
State law stipulates that state and national flags must be displayed on the same-sized flagpoles in government buildings and educational institutions.
Interesting Facts About the Colorado Flag
1. The state flag of Colorado is rated 16th out of 72.
Colorado's flag placed sixteenth with a score of 6.83 in a survey of 72 state, provincial, and territorial flags performed in 2001 by the North American Vexillological Association (the winner, New Mexico, scored 8.61).
2. The state flag is used on highway markers
You might see Colorado's flag on road signs as you travel through the state. Highway markers often use this pattern. Highway signs are, of course, highway markings. The state flag and the highway number are frequently displayed together on Colorado's highway markers.
FAQ About the State of Colorado
What is Colorado famous for?
Colorado is renowned for its stunning scenery, abundant animals, and the diversity of activities it provides, including canoeing, horseback riding, mountain biking, skiing, and just relaxing in the great outdoors. It is renowned for its sand dunes, hot springs, mesas, and woodlands.
Learn more about some of the distinctive features and locations that define Colorado:
1. Rocky Mountain National Park: Rocky Mountain National Park is one of Colorado's best and most stunning national parks, spanning 415 miles. This national park, which is encircled by a granite mountaintop, houses a reasonably sized universe. Elks can be seen peacefully sipping water from one of the 156 lakes that it is home to or grazing beneath the mountains! The most well-known of these is Bear Lake.
2. Vail: Vail is a ski resort town that holds the distinction of being referred to as the King of American ski resorts, at least by Forbes. Vail includes settlements at the base that were especially constructed to resemble a town in Tyrol, with an astonishing 200 routes that encompass an estimated 5,289 acres. Beautiful scenery, storied back bowls, skiing in powder snow, five-star hotels, spas, fantastic bars, shopping options—you name it, and they probably have it. They also offer a lavish theater with fine dining and drinks!
3. The food: Colorado is home to a variety of regional specialties. Colorado is well-known for its breweries, but it is also home to some mouthwatering cuisine, including bison and Colorado lamb, both of which are found on the menus of most restaurants. Then there is the Rocky Mountain Oyster, which is composed of — prepare yourself — bull or bison testicles and has very little to do with mollusks. They are deep-fried after being floured and seasoned with salt and pepper. Rocky Ford cantaloupe and Palisade peaches are other delicacies grown in Colorado.
4. Mesa Verde National Park: Mesa Verde National Park, which was created in 1906, is located in Colorado. It was once home to the Ancestral Pueblo, who lived there from 600 to 1300 CE but left for unknown reasons after that. Numerous ancient sites and cliff dwellings can be found in Mesa Verde, which is Spanish for "Green Table." And you don't just go into this location and stroll serenely, no. You traverse caves and ladders while looking at the old occupants' rock carvings. From the months of April to October, tours are led.
5. Old West Towns: Following the discovery of gold, Colorado experienced a boom in activity in the 1800s. Many others came seeking their riches, and the town became crowded with boisterous, obnoxious males. These men brought tales of the Wild West with them, tales of saloons and gunfights. These towns made the decision to preserve a piece of their heritage after the mines started to close. Old West communities in Colorado offer tourists a glimpse of life in the past. These and other well-known towns include Silverton, Durango, Leadville, Cripple Creek, and Central City. The Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad is a popular destination.
How cold does it get in Colorado?
Temperatures can fall below freezing even in the summer. Temperatures have fallen as low as -61°F throughout the Yampa valley in northwest Colorado and -60°F at Taylor Reservoir during extreme weather. Although these low temperatures are uncommon, they show the extremes that mountain weather patterns may bring about.
What is the motto of Colorado?
Nil Sine Numine, the Latin motto of Colorado, means "Nothing without Providence or Deity." The State Seal's ribbon includes this wording. Colorado has a state seal, two official songs, a state flag, and numerous other official emblems and symbols.
What Colorado Flags Does Carrot-Top Offer?
Carrot-Top Industries is proud to offer indoor, outdoor and Colorado Flag Sets, so you can be sure that you are getting a flag that is perfect for your needs!
Beacon® Nylon, a unique product of Carrot Top, is used to create indoor Colorado flags. These flags include strong, fray-resistant stitching, finely woven nylon, and vibrant, eye-catching colors. The sizes of indoor Colorado flags can be chosen to complement the height and position of your flagpole.
The best all-around flags are our outdoor Colorado flags. These exquisitely designed flags are constructed from the best materials and are offered in our exclusive Patriarch® Polyester and Beacon® Nylon fabrics. Outdoor Colorado flags include reinforced seams and vibrant, fade-resistant colors.
With our Colorado Flag Sets, you may customize the appearance and style of your display by combining your preferred flag size with a wide range of flagpole options. The flag sets from Carrot Top come in a selection of different finishes. All flag sets come with a weighted gold-finished base, a decorative spear with a gold finish, and a gold rope with tassel.
Our Colorado Flags are Made in the USA
We take great pride in offering Made in the USA American and Colorado state flags. You can directly support American independence and ensure safer and more equitable working conditions by purchasing products made in the United States.
Contact Our Flag Expert Today!
We at Carrot-Top are very proud of our more than 40 years of experience selling flags. If you contact us right away, any of our Customer Care Representatives will be delighted to assist you in placing an order for a Colorado state flag, an American flag, a flagpole, any of our personalized goods, or even one of our military flags. Please read our comprehensive flag buying guide as well to ensure that you are getting the right size flag for your display!