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Indiana Fun Facts

The State Flag of Indiana

Indiana State Flag

The flags dimensions shall be three feet fly by two feet hoist; or five feet fly by three feet hoist; or any size proportionate to either of those dimensions. The field of the flag shall be blue with nineteen stars and a flaming torch in gold or buff. Thirteen stars shall be arranged in an outer circle, representing the original thirteen states; five stars shall be arranged in a half circle below the torch and inside the outer circle of stars, representing the states admitted prior to Indiana; and the nineteenth star, appreciably larger than the others and representing Indiana shall be placed above the flame of the torch. 

The outer circle of stars shall be so arranged that one star shall appear directly in the middle at the top of the circle, and the word "Indiana" shall be placed in a half circle over and above the star representing Indiana and midway between it and the star in the center above it. Rays shall be shown radiating from the torch to the three stars on each side of the star in the upper center of the circle.

The torch represents liberty and enlightenment. The rays represent far reaching influence.  The state flag was adopted in 1917.

Indiana State flag information provided by the Veterans Association and the Indiana Tourism Division.

Indiana State Bird
Indiana's State Bird - The Cardinal

The Cardinal
Adopted in 1933

Indiana State Tree
Indiana's State Tree - The Tulip Tree Tulip Tree Flower
Tulip Tree Fruit
Tulip Tree Twigs
The Tulip Tree Adopted in 1931
Indiana State Flower

The peony (Paeonia) was adopted as the state flower by the 1957 Indiana General Assembly. From 1931 to 1957, the zinnia was the state flower. The peony blooms the last of May and early June in various shades of red and pink and also in white; it occurs in single and double forms. No particular variety or color was designated by the General Assembly. The flower is cultivated widely throughout the state and is extremely popular for decorating gravesites for Memorial Day.
Information provided by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.

Indiana State Flower - Peony
Indiana State Seal
Indiana State Seal

Versions of the pioneer scene have been used on Indiana seals since territorial days. They are found on official papers as early as 1801. Both the 1816 and 1851 Constitutions provided for a seal to be kept for "official purposes." The 1963 Indiana General Assembly gave legal sanction to the design and provided an official description:

"A perfect circle, two and five eighths inches in diameter, enclosed by a plain line. Another circle within the first, two and three eighths inches in diameter enclosed by a beaded line, leaving a margin of one quarter of an inch. In the top half of this margin are the words 'Seal of the State of Indiana.'

At the bottom center, 1816, flanked on either side by a diamond, with two dots and a leaf of the tulip tree [the state tree], at both ends of the diamond. The inner circle has two trees in the left background, three hills in the center background with nearly a full sun setting behind and between the first and second hill from the left.

There are fourteen rays from the sun, starting with two short ones on the left, the third being longer and then alternating, short and long. There are two sycamore trees on the right, the larger one being nearer the center and having a notch cut nearly halfway through, from the left side, a short distance above the ground. The woodsman is wearing a hat and holding his ax nearly perpendicular on his right. The ax blade is turned away from him and is even with his hat.

The buffalo is in the foreground, facing to the left of front. His tail is up, front feet on the ground with back feet in the air -- as he jumps over a log.

The ground has shoots of bluegrass, in the area of the buffalo and woodsman."

Information provided by the Indiana Historical Society.

Indiana State Song
"On the Banks of the Wabash"
Click on title to listen to the Midi song.

Other Official Indiana Items

  • Motto: "The Crossroads of America," adopted by the 1937 Indiana General Assembly.

  • Poem: "Indiana," by Arthur Franklin Mapes of Kendallville, adopted by the 1963 General Assembly.

  • River: Wabash River, adopted by the 1996 General Assembly.

  • Stone: Limestone, adopted by the 1996 General Assembly.

  • Official Language: English, adopted by the 1984 General Assembly.

The name "Indiana" was created by Congress in 1800
which means "the land of the Indians".

From 1805 to 1813, the capital of the Indiana territory was
Vincennes and was then moved to Corydon from 1813 to 1825.
Indianapolis became the state capital on January 12, 1825

Information provided by the Indiana Tourism Division.

Did you know?...
  • In 1920 the Duesenburg Motor Company in Auburn  produced its first production car and the first Studebaker automobiles were powered by electricity.
  • The first rapid fire gun was patented by Richard Gatling from Indianapolis in 1862.
  • The first automatic headlight dimmer was developed in Anderson in 1952.
  • The winning time of the first Indianapolis 500 in 1911 was 6 hours, 41 minutes and 8 seconds by driver Ray Harroun.
  • John Dillinger was from Mooresville, Indiana.
  • Nineteen-eighteen was the year an outgoing, likable, six-foot-tall basketball player named Charles H. "Chuck" Taylor made the Indiana High School All-State Team. Chuck was a Columbus born athlete and later a sports broadcaster. He developed a high top sneaker known as “Chucks” that were created by Converse. They were the official shoe for the Rolling Stones revival tour.
  • The first diesel powered tractor was produced in Columbus, Indiana in 1930.
  • The debut of singer Frank Sinatra was in Indianapolis at the Lyric Theater February 2, 1940 appearing with the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra.
  • McCormick's Creek was Indiana's first State Park.
  • The original plans of Jeffersonville City were drafted by Thomas Jefferson.
  • One of the nation's first electric inter-urban lines was opened between the towns of Brazil and Harmony.
  • Elkhart, Indiana is the band instrument capitol of the World.
  • The library in Fort Wayne, Indiana houses one of the largest genealogy libraries in America.
  • Notre Dame played its first football game in 1887. They would go on to win 11 national championships.
  • Theme parks were invented in Indiana. The world's first theme park opened on August 3, 1946, in Santa Claus, Indiana. Santa Claus Land opened a full nine years before Mr. Disney opened his park in California. Today, Santa Claus Land is called Holiday World, and includes The Raven - voted the #1 Wooden Coaster on the planet in 2000. Holiday World continues to be owned and operated by the same family that got it all started more than half a century ago.
  • There's only *one* Santa Claus Post Office in the world. And it's in Indiana! Since May 21, 1856, the little post office in Santa Claus, Indiana, has faced a blizzard of holiday mail each December as folks send their mail to get the special Santa Claus, Indiana, postmark.
  • Abraham Lincoln grew up in Indiana. From the time he was 7 until he reached 21, he and his family lived on a farm in what is now Lincoln City, Indiana, in Spencer County. There's a national park, a state park, and even an outdoor drama in his honor.
  • The remains of Nancy Hanks Lincoln, President Abraham Lincoln's mother, rest in a peaceful pioneer cemetery in Lincoln City, Indiana. She died in 1818, when Abraham was nine years old.
  • Tomato Juice was first served at a French Lick Hotel.
  • A German Buzz Bomb from WWII, believed to be the only one on public display in the Nation, can be found on the Putnam County Courthouse lawn in Greencastle.
  • The world's first transistor radio was made in Indianapolis.

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