February 16, 1895
The current flag of Alabama was adopted by the Alabama Legislature on Feb. 16, 1895, forming a crimson cross of St. Andrew on a field of white. The bars of the cross must be at least 6 inches wide; therefore, small representations of the Alabama flag don’t meet the legal definition. St. Andrew was crucified on a diagonal cross, according to records. The design was submitted by John W.A. Sanford Jr. His father had been commander of the 60th Alabama Infantry Regiment during the Civil War, and Sanford modeled his design on the battle flag used by his father’s regiment. Alabama’s flag most closely resembles the flag of Florida, whose heritage is steeped in the heritage of the Spanish Cross of Burgundy. Southern Alabama was originally part of Spanish Florida. Alabama adopted its flag design five years earlier than Florida.
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For more on Alabama’s Bicentennial, visit Alabama 200.