Maryland’s convention to ratify the Constitution voted approval on April 28, 1788, the sixth of the former British colonies to ratify.
April 28 is considered Maryland’s statehood date. According to the suggestions for proper times to fly the U.S. flag, Marylanders should fly their flags on April 28.
It’s only my opinion, but I think there is no grander display of a state and U.S. flag than with Maryland’s. Maryland’s flag is a unique design in the state flags, and it features colors not common to state flags. Our displays of both flags at our Maryland home often drew comments from passers-by (we lived on the street leading to the town’s Metro stop, so there was a lot of foot traffic.
Maryland’s flag features the two family crests of George Calvert, the First Lord Baltimore. In Maryland law it’s described:
The Maryland flag is divided into four quarters. The first and fourth quarters consist of six vertical bars alternately yellow (representing gold) and black with a diagonal band on which the colors are reversed. The yellow and black quarters represent the family arms of the first proprietor of Maryland, George Calvert, first Lord Baltimore. The second and third quarters consist of a quartered field of red and white (representing silver) bearing a Greek cross with arms terminating in trefoils. The colors in the second and third quarters alternate, with red on the white ground and white on the red. The red and white quarters display the arms of Lord Baltimore’s maternal family, the Crosslands.
The flag was officially adopted only in 1904. Maryland also has a detailed, but not too lengthy set of instructions on proper display and other care of the state flag.
Baltimore Harbor is home to Fort McHenry, the fort whose siege inspired Georgetown lawyer Francis Scott Key to write a poem about the U.S. flag, which became our national anthem. Partly due to this history, U.S. flags in Maryland often are the historic, 15-star/15-stripe flag that inspired Key.
- Josh Davidson photography has a nice shot of the Maryland and U.S. flags together, but his copyright notice indicates he doesn’t want you to see it here; so you don’t
- Maryland has an e-mail list to sign up for notifications on special orders for flag flying from the Governor
- Maryland Day is celebrated on March 25 — marking the landing of the first European settlers to what is now Maryland; it seems to be a bigger deal than statehood, in Maryland
- TimeToast timeline of Maryland history since statehood
- Every Day is Special feature on Maryland from 2012
- New one on me: The Baltimore Sun — a favorite paper of mine and one of America’s greatest newspapers, certainly in the top 10 — featured the cover of a February “Justice League of America” comic book, below. What’s up with that? I don’t know.