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Proposals 1944-1949 (Germany)

Last modified: 2023-01-31 by pete loeser
Keywords: germany | historical | proposal | cross: scandinavian (yellow) | cross (yellow) | cross: scandinavian (red) | cross: scandinavian (black) | cross: scandinavian (fimbriated) | stars: 9 (yellow) |
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As it became clear that Germany was going to be defeated in the war, various proposals for new flags for the country were made. Some of these are shown below. The colours of the Federal Republic of Germany flag were adopted 18 October 1948. The debate about the proposals occurred on 8 May 1949. The main proposals were one of the CDU proposals (yellow with red cross fimbrated black) and the one of the SPD, like the Weimar Republic flag. The socialists' proposal was adopted (49 votes to 1) and took effect 9 May 1949. Sources: the main source is an article from Lucien Philippe in Vexillinfo 123-24. Some notes are taken from other Bulletins.
Jaume Ollé, 4 May 1998

Interestingly, these proposals were very similar to those made by Prince Adalbert of Prussia in 1849-50, although these designs were unknown in the 1940s (the sketches were discovered in the late 1960s). Source: A Flag Against Hitler, Arnold Rabbow, Flag Bulletin #100 - Neubecker Festschrift; Vol XXII: No. 3-4, May-August 1983.
Dave Martucci, 6 June 1998

Christian Democratic Union proposals 1948

[CDU proposal 1948 (Germany)] Image by Jaume Ollé

The CDU proposal for a German Flag was voted on by the faction on 3 November 1948 and it was based on the "Resistance Movement" flag of 1944, with the colors of the cross and the fimbriation reversed. Konrad Adenauer backed the flag and it received considerable media attention. Nevertheless, it was not adopted. The flag was red, with a black fimbriated yellow Scandinavian-style cross. Interestingly enough, the CDU adopted its party flag during its convention in Hamburg 18-22 April 1953, the original Resistance flag with a large yellow eagle added.
Dave Martucci, 4 May 1998

[CDU proposal 1948 (Germany)]       [CDU proposal 1948 (Germany)]
Images by Jaume Ollé

Robert Lehrs proposal 1948

[Robert Lehrs proposal 1948 (Germany)] Image by Jaume Ollé

The stars in the canton should be the number of Länder within the federal state. I have drawn the image with ten stars but there were only 9 Länder in 1949 because Berlin did not become a Land until 1949. Later Saar and Berlin were added. So designs with 9, 10 and 11 stars were possible. The design was never hoisted.
Jaume Ollé, 4 May 1998

E. Redslob proposal 1948

[Redslob proposal 1948 (Germany)] Image by Jaume Ollé

The white band symbolizes the eastern part.
Jaume Ollé, 4 May 1998

Paul Wentzke proposal 1948

[Paul Wentzke proposal 1948 (Germany)] Image by Jaume Ollé

Josef Wirmer's "Resistance Flag" proposal 1944

[Josef Wirmer proposal 1944 (Germany)] Image by Jaume Ollé

The "Resistance" flag was designed by Josef Wirmer in 1944 as a combination of the Weimar [Republic] and Reich flags, a black Scandinavian-style cross fimbriated yellow on red.
Dave Martucci, 4 May 1998

[Ernst Wirmer proposal 1944 (Germany)] Image by Jaume Ollé

Another version of this flag was sketched by his brother Ernst who added an additional black fimbriation between the yellow and the red field, clearly an "Iron Cross" design element. [Editor's note: rather a Balkencross design.]
Dave Martucci, 4 May 1998

Ernst Wirmer, by the way, was a delegate to the Bundestag in 1948 and it was he who proposed the Resistance Flag to the CDU for a National Flag.
Dave Martucci, 6 June 1998

In a recent television news report of an anti-immigrant demonstration in Germany there appeared, among other flags, several examples of what FOTW has listed as the "Resistance flag proposal of 1944" (a Scandinavian cross in red, yellow and black). I conjecture that the users of this flag might see themselves as resisting the Islamicisation of Germany.
Kenneth Fraser, 10 November 2015

A German flag seller created a fictitious German Resistance War Flag, based on Josef Wirmer's flag (see here).
Martin Karner, 31 January 2023

Free German Commitee proposal 1944

[Free German Committee proposal 1944 (Germany)] Image by António Martins

Plain black-white-red horizontal tricolour.
Jaume Ollé, 4 May 1998

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