Flag History

City of Ottawa Flag

Symbolism: The four quarters of the field represent the four historic epochs of the Ottawa area; the Indian; the French or Exploratory; the Pioneer; and the Present. The arrowhead represents the original Indian culture here; the fleur-de-lis is a double reference. It refers to the French explorers and their influence, and also to the Boyce era and the founding of the Boy Scouts in America. The torch represents liberty and progress. The three wheels are: windmill wheel for agriculture, wheel for transportation, cogwheel for industry. The two rivers represent the Illinois and the Fox Rivers. The green indicates the rich vegetation which the soil of the area supports, and which is the dominant color of the area. The silver indicates the mineral (sand) deposits. The black indicates the richness of the soil; the gold conveys the ripened crops. The blue stands for the sky and water. Red, of course, is the standard color for valor.