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Saint Paul, Minnesota (U.S.)

Ramsey County

Last modified: 2018-07-31 by rick wyatt
Keywords: saint paul | minnesota | ramsey county |
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[flag of Saint Paul, Minnesota] 4:5 image(s) by permission of David B. Martucci
image(s) from American City Flags, Raven 9-10 (2002-2003), courtesy of the North American Vexillological Association, which retains copyright.



See also:


Current Flag

Text and image(s) from American City Flags, Raven 9-10 (2002-2003), courtesy of the North American Vexillological Association, which retains copyright. Image(s) from American City Flags by permission of David B. Martucci.

Design

The flag of St. Paul is a horizontal tribar of equal yellow, blue, and yellow stripes. In its center is the civic shield in red, in the shape of an “American” shield. The upper third of the shield is divided into two compartments separated by a narrow vertical yellow line. In the left (hoist) is a yellow log cabin, showing the front and a portion of the hoist side; in the right (fly) is a truncated capitol dome with a wreath at its base, also in yellow. The lower part of the shield has a blue winged wheel with eight spokes on an inverted yellow isosceles triangle, its lower point truncated in a concave arch. Above the shield, on the upper stripe, is a small blue five-pointed star. Below the shield, on the lower stripe, is a red ribbon with SAINT PAUL in yellow.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Symbolism

According to the St. Paul Junior Chamber of Commerce:
A blue mid stripe represents the Mississippi River; a small cabin stands for Father Gaultier’s original St. Paul chapel; a dome represents Minnesota’s Capitol and capital; and a winged wheel indicates St. Paul’s position as a transportation hub. The flag also contains a star of the north, symbolic of Minnesota, and a red shield, representing the progress and spirit of the city, while gold stripes are symbolic of the future.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Selection

A citywide contest was sponsored by the St. Paul Association of Commerce.
Flag adopted: 22 November 1932 (official).
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Designer

Gladys Mittle, an art student at the College of St. Catherine.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

More about the Flag

Gaultier’s log mission chapel was erected in 1841; called “St. Paul’s”, it gave the name to the village that grew up around it. The first major display of the city flag was on 30 March 1935, when thousands of the flags decorated the city for St. Paul Day.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

As recently as 2004, there were only four known copies of the St. Paul flag on public display, according to a Pioneer Press (local newspaper) report. At the time (2002–2006), St. Paul Mayor Randy Kelly suggested a contest to replace the Mittle flag with something “more dynamic.” But Kelly’s idea didn’t fly. In 2012, writer and artist Andy Sturdevant
wrote in a MinnPost article that the flag is “just not inspiring.” Gizmodo featured the Minneapolis city flag in a 2015 article asking, “Are These the Ugliest City Flags on Earth?” And a 2017 City Pages article dissed the Minneapolis flag for its “hollow symbolism.” and said that he couldn’t find any public displays of the St. Paul flag.

But oddly, since then, the old flag has begun to experience a renaissance...

St. Paul was even named as such after the Rev.'s chapel of the same name. "Before this time, the area had been called Pigs Eye after the saloon proprietor Pierre “Pigs Eye” Parrant."
Source: https://www.stpaul.gov
Esteban Rivera, 1 February 2018