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Chicago, Illinois (U.S.)

Last modified: 2006-07-15 by rick wyatt
Keywords: chicago | illinois | star | world’s fair |
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Chicago image by Rick Wyatt, 10 June 1999

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Description and meaning of the flag

The flag of Chicago has broader blue stripes and four six-pointed stars all in red. Originally the flag had two stars when it was adopted in 1917. The white stripes represent the North, West and South sides of the city. The two blue stripes symbolize Lake Michigan plus the North Branch of the Chicago River, and South Branch of the Chicago River plus the Great Canal. The symbolism of the stars is complex. Here is how it is described:

The First Red Star represents Fort Dearborn (added in 1939).
The Points of the First Red Stars signify:
  1. transportation
  2. labor
  3. commerce
  4. finance
  5. populousness
  6. salubrity
The Second Red Star represents the Chicago Fire of October 8-10, 1871.
The Points of the Second Red Star signify:
  1. religion
  2. education
  3. esthetics
  4. justice
  5. beneficence
  6. civic pride
The Third Red Star represents the World's Columbian Exposition of 1893.
The Points of the Third Red Star signify history of the area:
  1. France 1693
  2. Great Britain 1763
  3. Virginia 1778
  4. Northwest Territory 1798
  5. Indian Territory 1802
  6. Illinois Statehood 1818
The Fourth Red Star represents the century of progress, and was added for the Exposition of 1933 (added in 1933).
The Points of the Fourth Red Star signify:
  1. Country's Third Largest City
  2. City's Latin Motto
  3. I Will Motto
  4. Great Central Market
  5. Wonder City
  6. Convention City
Jan Oskar Engene, 16 March 1996

Chicago Fire Department

Chicago Fire Department flag image located by Ned Smith, 26 June 2005

This photo of the Chicago Fire Department flag is unfortunately slightly cropped.
Ned Smith, 26 June 2005

Chicago 2000

Chicago Welcomes 2000 flag image by Steve Stringfellow, 23 December 1999

This flag is being used by the City of Chicago, Bureau of Tourism, to welcome visitors to Chicago, especially for the year 2000 celebration. The mayor of this city, Richard M. Daley, has invited regular everyday people from all over the world to dinner New Year's Eve in Chicago.
Steve Stringfellow, 23 December 1999

Chicago World's Fair

Chicago World's Fair 1933 image by Antonio Martins, 3 December 2001