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Long Beach, California (U.S)

Los Angeles County

Last modified: 2018-08-07 by rick wyatt
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[flag of Long Beach, California] 3:5 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.


Long Beach: Green Port


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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 field of the flag of Long Beach is divided horizontally into three unequal sections of gold, white, and blue. The central section swirls in an “S” from the lower hoist to the upper fly, widening as it goes, giving the effect of an undulating wave moving toward a beach. On a field of 3 by 5 units, the gold portion is 2.25 units wide at the hoist and narrows to .5 units at the fly. The white portion is .25 units wide at the hoist and .75 units wide at the fly. The blue portion is .5 units wide at the hoist and widens to 1.75 units wide at the fly. Along the lower part of the blue portion, beginning about one-third of the distance from the hoist, is CITY OF LONG BEACH in a blue Arial font, and immediately below, in smaller italics of the same font, THE INTERNATIONAL CITY. In the upper hoist is the inner portion of the city’s seal (without the ring around it that has the city’s name and date of incorporation, 1897), with a diameter of 1.5 units. Around the blue outside edge of the seal is a narrow, white circular band. On the seal’s field of gold appears a large scallop shell in outline. Within the shell is a fanciful beach scene. According to the official description (colors, not mentioned in the description, are indicated in brackets):
The Seal of the City shall consist of a circular disk with a design cut thereon showing the ‘Queen of the Beaches’ [black robe, dark green apron, with a Minerva-like gold crested helmet] seated on her throne in the foreground, scepter in hand, with the [brown] California ‘Golden Bear’ at her feet with the [gold] horn of plenty pouring forth agricultural and manufactured products while perpetual sunshine [rising from the horizon, yellow, with white rays] lights the heavens where an airplane [dark red] soars. There are also shown the [green] mountains and the [blue] sea, and a [black] ship, the [gold] auditorium, the [gold] Rainbow Pier and [white] yachts offshore, as well as a [white] lighthouse, breakwater and docks [in red, white, and brown], together with a [brown] railroad locomotive, [red, white, and black] factories, refineries and oil wells. Also included are a [gold and white] beach, the [red] book of knowledge and a [gold] lamp of wisdom.
The queen’s gold scepter is held in her right hand; her left hand rests on a gold circular shield between her and the small bear. The sky is aqua-colored with tinges of blue around the edges where it meets the edge of the shell. Curved across the center of the sky, next to the shell’s edge, is the Latin motto URBS AMICITIAE (“The Friendly City”) in small blue letters. Centered, and curved across the portion of the gold field visible between the shell’s edge and that of the seal, are four tiny black five-pointed stars.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Symbolism

The gold color is for the sand of the city’s eight-mile beach; the white represents the city’s clear, clean air; and the blue is for the ocean. The seal uses the metaphor of a goddess blessing and protecting the arts, recreation, commerce, and industry of the city.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Selection

The city held several contests for a city flag, but never found an acceptable design. Someone in the administration suggested adopting an adaptation of the popular Port of Long Beach flag, identical to the current city flag, except that Port’s logo appears in the canton, and the legend across the bottom reads PORT OF LONG BEACH. The Port’s logo is an oval globe showing the continents of the Western Hemisphere in white on blue oceans that extend to the rim of the Eastern Hemisphere land masses.
Flag adopted: 5 July 1967 (official).
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

Designer

Al Maddy, Director of Administration for the Harbor Department, designed the port’s flag in 1964 or 1965. The seal was designed by Roland S. Gielow, a draftsman in the Engineering Department. The seal was adopted on 23 September 1930.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

More about the Flag

The flag was displayed on the RMS Queen Mary on her final cruise from England to Long Beach in 1967, where she remains docked. The city flag was then flown daily from the ship’s prow.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003


Long Beach: Green Port

[Green Port Flag of Long Beach, California] image located by Valentin Poposki, 13 July 2006

The Green Flag of the Port of Long Beach for Environmental Achievement in 2005 is found at www.polb.com/news/displaynews.asp?NewsID=43 or www.oocl.com/cn/press/2006/30March2006(2).htm. The program provides financial incentives and recognition to the Port's vessel operators who participate consistently in a voluntary speed-reduction program designed to reduce air pollution.
Valentin Poposki, 13 July 2006