Buy State Flags from Allstate FlagsBuy US flags from Five Star Flags
This page is part of © FOTW Flags Of The World website

Missouri (U.S.)

Last modified: 2006-07-22 by rick wyatt
Keywords: missouri | united states |
Links: FOTW homepage | search | disclaimer and copyright | write us | mirrors

[Flag of Missouri] by Mario Fabretto, 24 February 1998

Municipal Flags:

See also:

In 1822, a star was added, representing Missouri, bringing the total number of stars on the U.S. flag to 24. There were thirteen stripes representing the thirteen original colonies.


The Missouri flag was adopted on March 22, 1913. The flag was designed by Mrs. Marie Elizabeth Watkins Oliver. The flag consists of three horizontal stripes red-white-blue, which represents valor purity vigilance and justice. In the center white stripe is the Missouri coat of arms, circled by a blue band containing 24 stars denoting that Missouri was the 24th state. The COA also contains the year 1820.
Dov Gutterman, 9 October 1998

Legal Description

Revised Statutes of Missouri (RSMo)
10.020. The official flag of the state of Missouri is rectangular in shape and its vertical width is to the horizontal length as seven is to twelve. It has one red, one white and one blue horizontal stripe of equal width; the red is at the top and the blue at the bottom. In the center of the flag there is a band of blue in the form of a circle enclosing the coat of arms in the colors as established by law on a white ground. The width of the blue band is one-fourteenth of the vertical width of the flag and the diameter of the circle is one-third of the horizontal length of the flag. In the blue band there are set at equal distances from each other twenty-four five-pointed stars. The original copy of the design shall be kept in the office of the secretary of state. The flag shall conform to the design set out on page xxvi, RSMo.

10.060. The device for an armorial achievement for the state of Missouri is as follows: Arms, parted per pale, on the dexter side; gules, the white or grizzly bear of Missouri, passant guardant, proper on a chief engrailed; azure, a crescent argent; on the sinister side, argent, the arms of the United States, the whole within a band inscribed with the words "UNITED WE STAND, DIVIDED WE FALL". For the crest, over a helmet full-faced, grated with six bars; or, a cloud proper, from which ascends a star argent, and above it a constellation of twenty-three smaller stars, argent, on an azure field, surrounded by a cloud proper. Supporters on each side, a white or grizzly bear of Missouri, rampant, guardant proper, standing on a scroll, inscribed with the motto, "Salus populi suprema lex esto", and under the scroll the numerical letters MDCCCXX. And the great seal of the state shall be so engraved as to present by its impression the device of the armorial achievement aforesaid, surrounded by a scroll inscribed with the words, "THE GREAT SEAL OF THE STATE OF MISSOURI", in roman capitals, which seal shall be in a circular form and not more than two and a half inches in diameter.

Joe McMillan, 15 February 2000

Civil War Battle Flag

[Battle Flag of Missouri] by Christopher S. Johnson, 17 February 1999

This flag, nowadays called the Missouri Battle Flag although I don't think it was called that at the time, might be considered Missouri's first flag. Several Confederate Missouri units carried it.
Christopher S. Johnson, 17 February 1999

The Missouri State Guard of Gen. Sterling Price carried, according to orders, a blue flag with the state coat of arms on it. While I have accounts of these flags in battle at such places as Carthage and Wilson's Creek, to my knowledge none survive today. There are one or two surviving MSG flags that do not look like the prescribed flags.

Also - in early 1863 and again in early 1864, a new pattern of battle flag was issued to Missouri troops, first for Gen John Bowen's Division prior to Vicksburg and then for Sterling Price's forces in his 1864 campaign.

These were blue fields bordered in red and a white Latin cross set off-center towards the hoist edge. Those of 1864 were slightly fatter crosses than the earlier versions. The first batch were made in Missouri and smuggled into the division by Bowen's wife. The second batch were made in Federal occupied New Orleans and smuggled into Missouri.
Greg Biggs, 18 February 1999

State Military Crest

by Joe McMillan, 21 April 2000

The state military crest, which is the crest used in the coats of arms of units of the National Guard, as granted by the precursor organizations of what is now the Army Institute of Heraldry. The official Institute of Heraldry blazon is "A grizzly bear standing rampant proper."
Joe McMillan, 21 April 2000

Missouri State Guard

by Scott K. Williams, 30 September 2002

A possible rendition of the flag of the Confederate Missouri State Guard from the American Civil War.  This is the flag that Gen. Sterling Price calls for in his regulations for these troops. Unfortunately, none of them seem to exist today and those that were made for MSG troops that do survive, do not seem to have followed this pattern at all.  If any have turned up I would love to see and hear about them. For more information see the website Flags of The Confederacy and the battle flags section of the Trans-Mississippi.
Greg Biggs, 30 September 2002