Thursday, February 16, 2012
Do you know how the design of our state flag came to be? A contest was held in 1927 for Alaskan children seventh through twelfth grade to design the flag. The winner of the contest was a seventh grade Aleut boy, named John Bell (Benny) Benson from Chignik, who was living in an orphanage in Seward.
He describes his design: "The blue field is for the Alaska sky and the forget-me-not, an Alaska Flower. The North Star is for the future state of Alaska, the most northerly of the union. The dipper is for the Great Bear symbolizing strength." Alaska's state song echoes his description.
There are several places in Alaska that honor his contribution. Anchorage, Kodiak and Seward named streets after him. There is Benny Benson Secondary School in Anchorage. You can visit the Benny Benson Memorial in Seward.
Learn more about how our state flag came to be and Benny's story.