Office of the Queens Borough President, New York City Local Government
   Queens Borough President, Helen M. Marshall  

History of the Queens Flag

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Queens Flag

This flag was adopted on
June 3, 1913.

A Brief History of the Queens Flag
(more details below!)
Adopted June 3, 1913, the Queens Flag tells the history of the borough from the time of its purchase from the Indians by Dutch governor William Kielt, whose shield is typified by the blue, white and blue stripes.

The circle of wampum denotes the Indian name for Long island - Seawanhaka - at the time of its discovery. In the Indian language, Seawanhaka meant wampum. First settlers are represented by the two flowers - the tulip, emblematic of the Dutch, and the double red and white rose of the English, representing the Houses of York and Lancaster.

The Queen's crown signifies the name of the county and borough in honor of Queen Catherine of Braganza. The date indicates the year in which Queens became a part of the City of New York - January 1, 1898.

Details on the Queens Flag
Early in the year 1913, the Chamber of Commerce of the Borough of Queens recommended to Borough President Maurice E. Connolly that it would be appropriate if an official Queens Flag were to be designed and adopted.

Mr. Connolly agreed and assigned Rodman J. Pearson, a draftsman in the Bureau of Sewers, to prepare preliminary sketches, which were later submitted to the Chamber's board of directors for approval.

A special committee consisting of Commissioner of Highways G. Howland Leavitt, Louis Windemuller and Charles G. Meyer was appointed to confer with E. Hageman Hall, president of the New York Historical Society and secretary of the American Scenic and Historical Preservation Society, for the purpose of authenticating the various elements of the design.

At Mr. Hall's suggestion, several important changes were incorporated and finally on June 3, 1913, the revised sketch was adopted by the Queens Chamber.

The Chamber defrayed the expense of making the initial flags, later displayed at regular functions of the Queens Chamber and at its headquarters in Long Island City, at the Queens Borough Public Library in Jamaica, and at Queens Borough Hall in Kew Gardens.

The new Queens Flag was first displayed officially at the celebration inaugurating construction of the dual rapid transit system in Queens on June 7, 1913.

For some reason, it was not flown at Borough Hall until October 14, 1929, when Borough President George U. Harvey raised it upon the Borough Hall standard in the presence of Queens Chamber officials and borough civic leaders.


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