West Virginia

The Mountain State

The Original

The elements to the flag include

  • White field

  • Blue border

  • State coat of arms

  • Red banner “State of West Virginia”

  • Two crossed rifles

  • Liberty cap

  • Miner with pickaxe and anvil

  • Farmer with axe, plow, and cornstalk

  • Boulder “June 20, 1863” (the date of statehood)

  • Red banner “Montani Semper Liberi” (state motto meaning “Mountaineers Are Always Free”)

The West Virginia flag was adapted on March 7, 1962.

The flag has poor design elements. It placed 51st in the 2001 North American Vexillology Association survey of 72 American and Canadian flags.

Keep it simple: The coat of arms is a very complicated element to this flag. If this flag was flying on a pole, it would be almost impossible to make out every detail on the flag. Even on here on this screen, it is difficult to make out every detail. 

Use meaningful symbolism: The two rifles crossed with the liberty cap symbolize the need to fight for freedom. The farmer with the ax, plow, and cornstalk are representative of the state’s agriculture. The miner with his pickax and anvil are a symbol of industry. 

Use two or three basic colors: In this flag we see ten colors being used.

No lettering or seals: This flag does have the coat of arms of West Virginia on it. There are elements of the seal that could be conveyed with imagery, but are spelt out.

Be distinctive or be related: This flag is distinct.

The Redesign

There is a border added to show edges of the flag.

Keep it simple: I simplified this flag down to three  bars on a white field. 

Use meaningful symbolism: The top and bottom blue bar are symbolic of the agriculture and industry of the state. The gold bar is symbolic of independence. 

Use two or three basic colors: In this flag we see three colors being used. The state colors are old gold and blue as used in the flag. 

No lettering or seals: I have taken out the coat of arms and wording.

Be distinctive or be related: This flag is distinct.