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Anchorage, Alaska (U.S.)

City and Borough

Last modified: 2018-07-27 by rick wyatt
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[Flag of Anchorage, Alaska] 2:3 image by António Martins-Tuválkin, 26 January 2008
based on image from www.muni.org



See also:


City

Anchorage is a unified home rule municipality in Alaska and Alaska's most populous city.

Current Flag

Text and image(s) from American City Flags, Raven 9-10 (2002-2003), courtesy of the North American Vexillological Association, which retains copyright. Image(s) from American City Flags by permission of David B. Martucci.

Design

The flag of Anchorage has a gold field of 6 units by 9, with the municipal seal in the center, 3.5 units in diameter. The field of the seal is white. In its center, and extending nearly to its inner circumference, is a blue anchor with its tangs curving upwards halfway along each side of the seal, ending in barbed inward-facing points. The anchor overlays an 18th-century sailing ship in yellow under full sail toward the hoist. A wavy yellow line below the ship suggests the ocean. In the upper left above the ship's prow is a small rayless yellow sun. Above the ship's stern, in blue, is a modern airplane, flying toward the hoist. Two narrow blue concentric circles set closely together enclose the seal. Curved and centered above the outer edge of the seal is ANCHORAGE, curved and centered below is ALASKA, all in small blue letters.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Symbolism

The ship on the seal symbolizes the voyages of British Captain James Cook (1728-1779) who explored the site of Anchorage in today's Cook Inlet. The airplane represents Anchorage's pivotal role as a transportation hub, and the sun symbolizes the city's northern latitude and wide variation of daylight hours from summer to winter. The anchor represents the city's name and origin as an anchorage.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Selection

The flag was developed sometime after the municipality's seal was adopted.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Designer

Unknown.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

More about the Flag

The ship is likely the HMS Resolution, a British ship under the control of the famous Captain James Cook on his final voyage of exploration in the Pacific. The city of Anchorage gets its name because Captain Cook anchored adjacent to where the city center is now located. He wrote "anchorage" on his maps. It is a very interesting story (which I won't include here), and explains many of the unusual geographic names in the area.
Michael Wilson, 17 May 2004

The city flag is reported in use in and after July 26, 2005, half-staffed as a sign of mourning for slain denizens: "City flags flew at half-staff last week" at www.muni.org/MayorNews/MTP20050801.cfm and "City flags lowered" at www.muni.org/Mayor/press_release_20050726.cfm.
António Martins-Tuválkin, 26 January 2008

Having lived in Anchorage, I can tell you that it was in use at least as early as 1980, and probably dating to the incorporation of the municipality in the 1970s.
David C. Fowler, 26 January 2008


Providence Alaska Medical Center

[Providence Alaska Medical Center, Anchorage, Alaska] image by Randy Young, 18 May 2016

Providence Alaska Medical Center is the largest hospital in the state of Alaska. Located in Anchorage, the hospital and its supporting health system are the second-largest employer in the state.

According to photographs online, Providence Alaska Medical Center flies a flag that combines the hospital's corporate logo with the Donate Life logo and inscription. The flag features a white field. In the top half is the hospital's corporate logo. Toward the fly is a Christian cross, colored dark blue on top and gold on the bottom, with the name of the hospital extending off toward the fly from the cross. The bottom half of the flag represents Donate Life, with the Donate Life logo toward the fly and the motto of "Honoring Organ & Tissue Donors" extending toward the fly.

The photographs can be seen at
www.saratogaflag.com (image: www.saratogaflag.com) and www.lifealaska.org (image: www.lifealaska.org)
Randy Young, 18 May 2016