George Washington On The Flag

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It is election day in the USA. American voters will decide who the 45th President of the United States will be. No matter if Hillary R. Clinton or Donald J. Trump wins, none of them will have a state named after them or have their image depicted on a state flag.

When it comes to presidents, George Washington was not only the first elected head-of-state of the young American nation in 1789, he is also the only president ever to have been elected unanimously by the Electoral College.

Apart from Washington seven US states are named after heads-of-state who exercised authority over parts of the territory of the present day United States of America:

Virginia is named after Elizabeth I, Queen of England, also known as the Virgin Queen because she never married. In 1583 Elizabeth granted a charter to establish a colony on the Atlantic coast of North America. The Commonwealth of Virginia was among the original 13 states which declared independence from Great Britain in 1776.

The part of Virginia west of the Allegheny Mountains broke away during the Civil War and was admitted to the Union in 1863 as a new state under the name of West Virginia.

North Carolina and South Carolina are named after Charles I, King of England and Scotland, who in a charter in 1629 granted lands south of Virginia and north of Spanish Florida and named them after himself. (Carolus is the Latin version of Charles.) The two Carolinas split in 1712 and were later among the 13 original American states.

New York is named after James II, or VII, King of England and Scotland. In 1664 when King Charles II established the Province of New York, his brother James was the Duke of York. James followed Charles as king in 1685. New York became one of the 13 states.

Louisiana is named after Louis XIV, King of France. The state of Louisiana was admitted to the Union in 1812. Originally, Louisiana was the name of a much larger territory stretching from the Gulf of Mexico to the Great Lakes. La Louisiane was colonized by the French from 1682, and in 1803 this enormous territory was sold to the United States.

Georgia is named after George II, King of Great Britain. The colony was founded in 1733 under a charter issued by him. Georgia is the southernmost of the original 13 states.

Washington is named after the 1st President of the United States of America, George Washington. The Territory of Washington was carved out of the vast Oregon Territory in 1853, and in 1889 it became the 42nd state of the USA.

For decades Washington didn’t have a state flag, but in 1923 the State Legislature adopted one: The flag of the State of Washington has the state seal on dark green. The seal mentions the year in which the state was admitted to the Union and it has the image of the president whose name it carries in the middle.

Only one state has been named in honor of one of the Union’s presidents. (New states with names such as Jefferson and Lincoln have been proposed over the centuries, though.) So far, the flag of Washington is the only state flag with an image of a president on it. It is very unlikely that there will be more than the one.

 

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