What the Colors Red, Blue, and White Stand for in the U.S. Flag

November 22, 2018 2 min read

Every Memorial Day and Fourth of July, we take out our flags and proudly hoist them in the air as an act of celebratory spirit. But has anyone ever stopped and ask, “Why is our flag red, white, and blue?” Why isn’t it, let’s say, yellow, green, and orange?

Each color on the flag has some meaning behind it. The flags around the world usually use colors to symbolize different national values. Same is the case with the American flag. The colors red, white, and blue are all symbolic of principles that represent the whole nation.

The Evolution of the Flag 

On the historic date of June 14, 1777, the Marine Committee of the Second Continental Congress in Philadelphia passed a resolution that read:

“Resolved, that the flag of the United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field representing a new constellation.”

And with these momentous words, the Star-Spangled Banner was born. However, the resolution never really said anything about the importance of choosing the colors red, white and blue.

It is perceived so because the American flag was originally believed to have adopted its colors from the British Union Jack. But perhaps the Congress realized that choosing the colors of the English flag while seeking independence from them was not such a great idea.

So, one year later, the Congress forwarded a resolution in which a seal was asked to be drawn up representing the Founding Fathers’ beliefs and ideologies, as well as the sovereignty of America. The colors red, white, and blue were chosen for the Great Seal and it was officially adopted on June 20, 1782.

The Meaning Behind the Colors 

Once the Great Seal was created, the Secretary of the Continental Congress at that time, Charles Thomson, explained the significance behind the colors of the seal, and by extension, the American flag. He said that, “The colors are those used in the flag of the United States of America. White signifies purity and innocence. Red, hardiness & valor, and Blue… signifies vigilance, perseverance & justice.”

Since then, the colors have come to carry both similar and different connotations over the years. Even ex-president Reagan put his own opinion forward when he declared 1986 to be the Year of the Flag. “The colors of our flag signify the qualities of the human spirit we Americans cherish,” he said. “Red for courage and readiness to sacrifice; white for pure intentions and high ideals; and blue for vigilance and justice.”

No matter the meaning behind them, the colors instantly evoke a deep sense of patriotism in us and we deeply cherish our Stars and Stripes.

If you’re looking to buy high-quality American flags, we at Federal Flags offer a wide range for you to check out! From custom-printed flags to retractable banners, we have it all!

Contact us now for more details.

Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


★ See Our Reviews

Real Reviews From Real People

425 reviews

Beautiful finish on quality materials. My install is not typical. I previously made my own pole out of 1.5" steel pipe with welded brackets to bolt to the hand rail and joists on the corner of my deck. It served it's purpose but never looked nearly as nice as it does now. I simply made nylon bushings to fit tightly between the steel pipe and the 3" aluminum pole and slipped it over. So far the highest wind we've had was 47mph and this configuration didn't flex at all with the flag at top mast. The flag is thicker material than most, and again, top quality material and craftsmanship. The best part for me is that this is 100% made in the USA. The only piece of the kit I didn't use was the nylon flag clips. You can upgrade to snaps that won't clang against the pole in the wind. Customer service was quick to respond and great to talk with. I will unquestionably buy another one for my next home!

Hard to find someone to do the job properly ,but after two weeks we finally got it in.
It is awesome and my neighbors are jealous. A couple of them have the telescopic flags so I enjoy telling them that mine is bigger than yours!

Excellent product. Very satisfied with the pole. Only complaint was the delivering carrier did call the day before delivery as instructed.

Fast and accurate products, highest quality around

Needed a flag as baseball highschool district started very soon and knew that the flag would need to durably survive a 3 month season of winds and rain.

Federal flag provides the highest quality flags at a reasonable price and the product stands up to the weather!