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Lenox, Massachusetts (U.S.)

Last modified: 2006-07-15 by rick wyatt
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Description of the flag

The town flag of the Town of Lenox, Berkshire County, Massachusetts is said to be the town seal in gold on a field of burgundy or red. It also has two prior names of the town- Yokun Town and Shire Town - and the dates those names were used, placed below the seal.

[Flag of Massachusetts]

An image of the town seal, in full color is at http://www.townoflenox.com/images/pageseal.gif - when the seal on the flag is reported as gold I am unsure if they mean just the ring is gold, with the central image formed by gold line on the field color; entirely gold, with the central image formed by black or red lines on the gold; or even just a gold ring, with the central image in full color.

Portions of the two stories follow, both from the Berkshire Advocate

First http://www.iberkshires.com/advocate/story12617.html

Lenox tries for a town flag
By Kate Abbott - November, 12 2003

LENOX The town has a flag or at least a flag design and forever in peace may it wave. At its Nov. 5 meeting, the Select Board announced the tally of votes that have been piling up in the town hall ballot box since late summer. The winner, the town seal in gold on a red background, earned 114 votes. It soundly defeated the second place winner, which earned 67 votes.

The flag design will now head to the state legislature for approval, according to chairman of the Select Board, Timothy Doherty. Once the state approves it, it will be hung in the Great Hall, with flags from 287 of Massachusetts' 351 cities and towns. The Massachusetts state library lists flags for Adams, Becket, Clarksburg, Dalton, Florida, Great Barrington, Lee, North Adams, Richmond, Sandisfield, Sheffield and Washington, among Lenox's neighboring communities.

Lenox residents have been considering four flag designs this fall. Peggy Steuerwald brought these designs before the Lenox Select Board at its July 16 meeting. The flag began as a project for Mrs. Vincent's class at Lenox Memorial Middle and High School, Steuerwald explained. Every year, Vincent's students take a semester to study something in Lenox and write a paper on it.  "When I started, I thought we had a town flag. We didn't, so I created one," she said. Steuerwald did a lot of research on Lenox, past and present, and what people liked and didn't like about the town. She visited the State House in Boston to see other town flags on display there.  She also interviewed teachers at Morris Elementary School and Lenox Memorial Middle and High School and in a survey asked which images should be on a town flag. People voted for the town hall, the Curtis, the Academy, the library and the church on the hill, she said. A couple of people said the town seal should appear as well.

Besides the winner, Steuerwald created one design with the seal and the five buildings in outline. She found out Lenox had been called Yokuntown and Shiretown in its past life, and incorporated these names in a third design. She found an old photograph taken at the monument, looking outward, with all five buildings in it. She took out the people and the horses and carriages and created a fourth design with that image. She talked with a silkscreen artist who said designs could be busy or complicated, if the design could be given on a disk. She then talked with State Rep. William "Smitty" Pignatelli (D- Lenox), she said, to learn about the process of getting a town flag approved and adopted. The Select Board had to approve a design and bring it to Pignatelli, who would then bring it before the House for approval. .....
And second, from http://www.northadams.com/advocate/story15509.html
Student becomes modern day Betsy Ross
By Bill Sample - September, 15 2004

LENOX As a result of a ninth grade class project, Lenox student Peggy Steuerwald made history by designing the town's first ever official flag, which now hangs in the Hall of Flags at the Statehouse in a place of honor she was allowed to pick out. Steuerwald, now a junior at the school, saw the process through from her early drawings, to a vote by the townspeople choosing one of her four original designs, to official sanction and acceptance by the Selectmen, and finally to a ceremony in Boston last week, where the banner was hung. "When I was doing research for Ms. Vincent's ninth-grade class project called `Our Town, Our Selves,' I wanted to see what our town flag looked like, and I found out we didn't have one," Steuerwald said. "I thought it would be fun to create one. I like to draw, so I decided to experiment with some designs." The quiet, creative high-schooler took the advice of her parents and submitted her drawings to the Selectmen, who set up a display in Town Hall of the four designs, with a ballot box underneath so townspeople could vote for their favorite one. After several months, the votes were counted and the winning design was submitted for final approval at the annual town meeting in May this year.

Done in the school colors of maroon and gold, with the town seal in the middle and the old-time names of Lenox, "Yokun Town" above and "Shire Town" below, along with the dates that the town was referred to by those names, the flag was unanimously accepted. "The idea of a town flag has been talked about for years, but it took a ninth grader to pick it up and keep it moving along" said Lenox native and state Rep. William "Smitty" Pignatelli, D-Lenox. "Peggy has done a beautiful job, and now the Lenox town flag will be on display as long as the Statehouse remains standing." Pignatelli traveled with Steuerwald, her parents, grandparents and sister to present the official banner of Lenox to the director of state buildings in Boston. When they got there, the Steuerwald family was treated to a guided tour of the Statehouse and posed for pictures as they officially presented the flag for display in the Hall of Flags.
....................
The aspiring flag maker also got a lesson in democracy out of the project, as the winning design was not her first choice. Nor was it the design her parents, grandparents and sister voted for. Of the four designs submitted, the townspeople of Lenox overwhelmingly voted for the simpler maroon and gold offering that eventually became the first town flag in Lenox history....
Ned Smith, 14 August 2005