This page is part of © FOTW Flags Of The World website

Phoenix, Arizona (U.S.)

Maricopa County

Last modified: 2018-08-06 by rick wyatt
Keywords: phoenix | arizona | maricopa county |
Links: FOTW homepage | search | disclaimer and copyright | write us | mirrors



[flag of Phoenix, Arizona] 5:9 image(s) by permission of David B. Martucci
image(s) from American City Flags, Raven 9-10 (2002-2003), courtesy of the North American Vexillological Association, which retains copyright.



See also:

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 Phoenix has a purple field with the head, breast, and wings of a stylized phoenix centered in white. The phoenix faces the hoist with its wings curved upward, so that the figure is shown within an imaginary circle with a diameter of one-third of the flag’s length.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Symbolism

The phoenix, from which the city derives it name, is the mythological bird that was consumed in flames and rose from the ashes. The flames are suggested in the central figure by the appearance of ruffled feathers. In ancient Greek, phoenix meant “purple,” and thus also suggests the color of the flag’s field.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Selection

The city council adopted the central figure as the official logo of Phoenix in 1987 after a public vote. It was placed on a flag in 1990.
Flag adopted: 14 February 1990 (official).
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Designer

The flag’s logo was designed by a graphic design firm of Smit, Ghomlely, Sanft, winners of a design competition for an official city logo. The logo is protected by copyright and trademark law.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003


Former flag

[flag of Phoenix, Arizona] image(s) by permission of David B. Martucci
image(s) from American City Flags, Raven 9-10 (2002-2003), courtesy of the North American Vexillological Association, which retains copyright.

The first flag of Phoenix is more elaborate. In 1921, the Phoenix Chamber of Commerce held a public contest for an appropriate design for a city flag. The winner of that contest is lost to posterity, as the design was considered too ornate for a flag. The second-place winner, Frederick C. Green, Sr., saw his design selected and made into a flag by a San Francisco company for $175. This flag was carried in the city’s combined Industrial Week and Armistice Day Parade, 11 November 1921, and adopted by the city council at its meeting of 23 November 1921.

Second place or not, the design of this flag is also ornate. The first flag was 52 by 66 inches, made of embroidered silk. Later versions were made in proportions of 5:6. The field of the flag is blue, with a gray phoenix, head facing the fly and wings outstretched, rising from a gold sun with 48 short pointed rays (the wings, extending outward from the sun toward the top corners of the field, obscure about six of the rays on either side). Below the phoenix, in the lower quarter of the field is an elaborate white heraldic ribbon inscribed CITY OF PHOENIX ARIZONA, in gold.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003