12 American Flag Designs That Were REJECTED


The American flag is one of history’s most
indelible icons. The star spangled banner has, since its inception,
become a symbol of freedom and democracy that every single American is extremely proud of. With its seven stripes and fifty stars and
the iconic trifecta of colours associated with freedom – red, white, and blue – almost
anyone in any corner of the globe will be able to recognise Old Glory in whatever medium
or form possible. However, the flag did not become our today’s
icon overnight. Before the final design was approved, the
look of the flag had to go through numerous looks and iterations that, if you would try
to imagine any of them today, would not really make much of an impact – and inspiration
– that it should or not at all. What’s even more interesting is that the
design that we all recognise today did not become official until 1960. Even more so, one of the most important chapters
in the history of the flag came about in the Eisenhower era when Alaska and the island
of Hawaii were going to be incorporated into the flag. American’s were extremely interested in
the new flag and eager to participate in history that President Eisenhower’s office received
thousands of unsolicited designs from citizens. You could say that this could also very well
be the first time in history that crowdsourcing came to light. So today we are going to revisit twelve of
these flag designs that did not necessarily fly well with our forefathers. 12. THE EAGLE AND THE STAR
The only requirement for the flag’s design was that the stars must be set in white over
a blue field. How the other elements are laid out are completely
up to the designer. There is even no requirement on how the stars
should be arranged. This one, from an anonymous designer, took
a cue from military flags and laid out the stars in a way that they would form one large
star with the American Bald Eagle at the very center. The stripes are laid out the same way as the
flag we use today. 11. STAR-STUDDED
This design lacked the blue field that was required of the flag. In its stead, are red stripes over a field
of white studded with stars and at the very center is a much larger star with another
one at its heart representing the largest and smallest states in the union. Aside from the fifty stars on the field were
four additional ones that are said to represent President Franklin D Roosevelt’s “Four
Freedoms”. And at the very bottom of the flag was a running
text of poetry that reads “From the state that is large, to the one that is small; All
fifty offer peace and goodwill to one and to all.” 10. THE DOPPELGANGER
Another one from an unknown designer featured the map of the mainland United States in blue
filled with white stars representing all fifty states. Since there is no restriction that the blue
field needs to be a square or a rectangle, this surely should have passed, right? Fortunately for us, it didn’t. Because the rest of the layout includes intersecting
red lines behind the US map that eerily resembles those of the United Kingdom’s Union Flag. 9. THE QUICK FIX
Designing a flag can be problematic and can take a lot of time until the right layout
is made. It takes careful and meticulous decisions
in order to avoid alienating groups of individuals or cause any kind of offense to anyone at
all. In the case of this design, the designer may
have drawn it up a little too hastily that it looks more like a gag than something you
would take seriously. The layout is pretty standard with the blue
field in the upper left-hand corner and the stripes in their proper places. However, the flag seems to be missing some
stars because there are only thirteen of them; and to make matters even more bizarre, a large
number 50 is at the center of the blue field, encircled by the said stars. 8. THE TORCH
Seeing kids being patriotic is something that any parent can be proud of and should continue
to encourage. In the case of a 17-year old student from
New Jersey, she took her patriotism and designed a flag for President Eisenhower’s consideration. The design was the standard layout of the
flag except that instead of laying out the stars in a row, they have been arranged in
a circle surrounding a hand carrying a white torch with red flame that we can only assume
is a representation of the Statue of Liberty. 7. MINOR IMPROVEMENTS
A woman by the name of Estell Arthur Owens submitted a design proposal for the flag that
makes some minor adjustments to the existing one. Using the same elements of the American Flag,
Owens, instead, rearranged the stars to form the numbers 1776 – the year when the Declaration
of Independence was signed as well as the same year Betsy Ross supposedly sewed Old
Glory at the request of George Washington, who was a Continental Army General back then. 6. THE GEOGRAPHER’S DREAM
At this point, we can assume that the standard layout of the flag is pretty much perfect
and makes quite an impression. This flag design sticks to that layout. However, instead of placing the stars where
they should be, the designer opted to place the map of the mainland US in the blue field
and has plotted out 48 stars on the geographic location of the state each one represents
with the stars for Hawaii and Alaska sitting next to each other on top of the map. 5. A COMPLETE OVERHAUL
A submission from a woman named Gertrude Brofman took the idea of the flag and completely turned
it into something, well, “new”. Designed by Brofman’s brother, the submission
features a stylized geometric pattern that reads “USA” in the middle of a large white
star. The pattern was designed in such a way that
however which way you flip the flag, it would still read “USA”. 4. NO SPACE WASTED
This design looks pretty simple. In fact the only change that was applied to
it was that the designer decided to extend the blue field so that it covers the entire
height of the flag. The colours and layout remain the same except
that the stars – since the blue field has been stretched downwards – now seem to be
arranged in columns instead of rows. It could have been a winner if not for the
fact that it appeared too cluttered and messy despite the designer’s best intentions. 3. WHAT’S A MOTTO WITH YOU? Here is another design that decided to keep
it straightforward and preserve the look of the flag. The design is pretty straightforward, preserving
the original layout of the flag. However, the stars have been rearranged so
that there are eight in five rows with the remaining two stars flanking the US motto
“In God We Trust” as the final row. 2. ROUND AND ROUND THE STARS
Another proposal sent to President Eisenhower’s office is also pretty straightforward and
still keeps most of the original layout of the flag. However, the unnamed designer made the creative
decision to layout the 50 white stars in concentric circles. A design choice that, somehow, confuses the
eyes more than keeping it locked onto the entire image of the flag. 1. THE UNITED STATES OF NATIONS
This is an interesting design that keeps the original elements and layout of the American
Flag. The stripes are in their proper positions,
the blue field is just the right size; however, instead of placing the stars that represent
all fifty states in the union, the designer made a bold choice of placing – what seems
to be – the logo of the United Nations in the blue field. While the United States is indeed one of the
most important and influential member-countries of the organization, having to incorporate
the standard of the United Nations into the American flag may be pushing it a little too
far. So there you go. I never thought about the process of making
the flag, but now that I think about it, it was a huge task that everyone felt important
to complete. I can’t really imagine the united states
having a different flag, and i’ve grown up with it my whole life. What are your thoughts? Anyways thanks for watching, I ‘ll see you
next time

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