Maryland has one of the most unique state flags in the country. The flag has a design that is split into four panels. The top left panel features the coat of arms that was granted to George Calvert. This design is also featured in the lower right panel. The lower left panel and upper right panel feature the coat of arms of the Crossland line—representing the family of Lord Baltimore’s mother.
Colors of the Flag
There are four colors used in Maryland’s state flag. The Calvert family banner features the colors of black and gold in a chevron pattern. The Crossland banner features a red and white cross botonny.
History of the Flag
The colony of Maryland was founded by Cecilius Calvert and Lord Baltimore. During the colonial period the Calvert coat of arms came to be associated with Maryland. However, once the state became independent, it quit using the coat of arms, but they were introduced again in the mid-19th century. It wasn’t until the Civil War when the Calvert coat of arms came into use. Banners depicting each coat of arms were used as the state experienced conflict. However, as the people began to reconcile, banners featuring both family symbols were put into use.
The first flag depicting the design that is in use today was first flown in 1880 in celebration of the founding of Baltimore. It was flown again during the dedication of monuments at Gettysburg Battlefield. Despite being flown during these events, the flag was not officially adopted as the state flag until 1904. The design that is still used today was officially adopted on March 9, 1904.
Maryland’s flag is just one of four state flags that does not include the color blue.
It is also the only flag in the nation that is based upon English heraldry.
In 2001, Maryland’s state flag design was ranked as fourth best among the flags of US states, territories and Canadian provinces.
Red, White, Black, Gold
Yellow and black alternating rectangles in the top left and bottom right corners, and red and white "+" design in the remaining corners