Last modified: 2002-09-28 by rick wyatt
Keywords: united states | native american | chickasaw |
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by Dov Gutterman, 1 July 2000
The Bicentennial Committee of Ardmore, Oklahoma, determined as one of the city's projects for the two hundredth anniversary of the founding of the United States to seek seven sets of the 14 flags that have flown over Oklahoma in the history of this continent. Although it was an easy and inexpensive matter to obtain 12 of those flags, the making of the Chickasaw and Choctaw flags proved to be too expensive.Dov Gutterman, 1 July 2000
In the spring of 1975, the committee asked the members of the Ardmore Indian Arts and Crafts organization to make the two tribal flags by hand. The first flag was completed in May of that year. Those who worked on making the flags were:
Mrs. Clifford Roland (Tommie), a Choctaw
Ms. Ruby McMillian, a Chickasaw-Choctaw
Ms. Debbie Farve, a Chickasaw-Choctaw
Ms. Era Carney, a Chickasaw Mr. Cecil Carney, a Chickasaw
Ms. Norma Griffin, a Choctaw
Ms. Ramona Pope, a Chickasaw
Ms. Janet Wallace, a Chickasaw
These people designed seven Chickasaw and seven Choctaw flags for use by the City of Ardmore. The flags were officially raised on the streets of Ardmore on July 4, 1975. After that date, the flags were flown on holidays and on other special events. Now they are flown every day.
The flags were made from new sheets, hemmed for extra strength. Metal rings were sewn into the flags for the flag rope and the great seals of the tribes were affixed with liquid embroidery paint. The first seal proved too small, and Mr. Les Wildman, a member of the bicentennial committee, enlarged the seal. The completed flag measured three feet by five feet, the standard flag size.
After the Ardmore flags were completed, eight flags were commissioned by Governor Overton James for the use of the Chickasaw Nation. It was at this time that blue was used as the background color in the Chickasaw Nation flag.