The similarity between the images on the flag of the Virgin Islands and the American Great Seal is intentional. The symbols and colors of the flag have special meanings. The V and I stand for the Virgin lsands’ initials. Additionally, the arrows stand for the islands of Saint Croix, Saint Thomas, and Saint John while the sprig of laurel represents victory. The color white symbolizes purity, while the color blue represent the sky and the ocean. Lastly, the gold and green colors symbolize the islands’ wealth and hills.
A cartoonist by the name Percival Wilson Sparks designed the flag of the island. The then-governor, Rear Admiral Summer Ely Whitmore Kitelle approached him and Mr. White for ideas on the flag. Once he had come up with the design, he drew it on a piece of cotton material and had both his wife Grace and his sister Blanche Joseph embroider it.
Before the sale of the islands in 1917 to the United States, the other flags flown on or around the islands were variants of the Dannebrog, which is the national flag of Denmark. The ships from the Danish West India Company displayed them. Immediately after the sale, the American flag was used. The Virgin Islands flag has been in use in its current form since it was officially adopted.
The United States Virgin Islands adopted its flag on May 17, 1921. The flag has a white background with a golden eagle between the letters V and I. The eagle is holding a sprig of laurel in one of its talons and three blue arrows in the other. It has a blue shield with alternating red and white vertical stripes on its chest. The design with the eagle is similar to the Great Seal of the United States. The flag’s dimensions are in the ratio 2:3.
This page was last modified on May 1st, 2018
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