Primary Source: December News from Indiana Historical Bureau

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Statehood Day Celebration

Happy Birthday, Indiana!

Indiana became a state December 11, 1816.  Each year, IHB joins state agencies and non-profits in celebrating Statehood in a celebration held in the Indiana State House.  This year, over 600 school children attended the festivities. 

IHB displays the original State Banner at each Statehood Day celebration.  The blue and gold state banner was adopted by the 1917 General Assembly as part of the commemoration of the state’s 1916 Centennial celebration, after a competition sponsored by the Daughters of the American Revolution with a $100 cash prize. The 1920 Indiana Yearbook provides an overview of the selection process.  The winning design was by Paul Hadley of Mooresville, Indiana.  The dimensions were changed to standard usage and the word "banner" replaced with "flag" in 1955.

The torch stands for liberty and enlightenment; the rays represent their far-reaching influence. The outer circle of thirteen stars represents the original thirteen states; the inner five stars represent the next five states admitted to the Union; the large star is Indiana, the nineteenth state.

Learn more about the state flag and other state emblems.

Right: Original state banner on display for the Statehood Day Celebration.

State Banner 1916
Students at IHB Display

Left: Students gather after viewing the banner to name all of the other state emblems at IHB's table during the Statehood Day Celebration.

What about the other state flag designs? 

IHB staff are occasionally asked about the fate of the unsuccessful submissions in the flag design competition, and it always stumps us.   Hadley himself submitted more than one proposal, and the first paper-and-cotton maquette of the winning submission resides in the Indiana State Museum.  Perhaps someone in your county entered the contest.  Have you seen their flag design on display in a local museum or private collection?  If so, write a note on our Facebook wall or send an email to  

Wanted Poster

If you have any information that might help IHB recover these State Historical Markers, which were recently reported missing, please contact us!


Shop @ IHB

Our holiday sale continues this month, with 20% off all regularly-priced items.  The price of the Kokomo Opalescent Glass Indiana ornament/suncatcher drops to $6.60 plus tax!

Our clearance section also has some great titles for gifting at 40% off. 


New Resource for Educators

The World of George Rogers Clark is a new video series produced by an immersive learning experience that allows schoolchildren to understand the many different views people had on the Trans-Appalachian frontier.

Fourth- and fifth-grade students will learn that Revolutionary War icon George Rogers Clark lived, worked and fought in a fledgling multicultural nation, thanks to a new video series, on DVD and viewable online, from Ball State University.

The World of George Rogers Clark brings the Revolutionary War to life as re-enactors tell their stories from the viewpoints of various participants, including slaves, British soldiers, French and Spanish residents, Native Americans and women. Filming was done at historic sites in Indiana, Kentucky and Ohio.


Civil War soldiers from Whitley County

Preparations are being made for additions to the Whitley County Civil War monument.  If you know the name of a Civil War soldier from Whitley County who is not currently listed on the monument, please contact Chuck Jones at 260-691-2230. 


“Our Food, Our Farmers” essay contest

Students in grades 4-12 are encouraged to consider the impact of Indiana foods and farmers for the 3rd Annual Ag Essay Contest titled “Our Food, Our Farmers: Nourishing Generations of Hoosiers.”

The essay competition includes three grade levels: 4-6, 7-9 and 10-12, and aligns with a number of state standards. A breakdown of the state core academic standards met by the essay contest is provided. Entries must be received by Feb. 1, 2013.