The Mississippi state flag history can be traced through many different versions. Mississippi was one of the first states to secede from the Union in 1861. At this time the Confederate States of America had yet to be established. Mississippi, taking key from Georgia, first flew a "Bonnie Blue Flag" to show that it was an independent state. Weeks later at the Mississippi Secession Convention, Mississippi created their first official flag. This flag was primarily white with one vertical red stripe on the rightmost side, a Magnolia tree in its center, and a small version of the Bonnie Blue Flag in its upper left corner. This flag was referred to as "The Magnolia Flag" and flew over Mississippi for 33 years. The Confederate colors were also flown over Mississippi, but only from 1861 to 1865 through the time of the Civil War. Towards the end of the war a third design was created that essentially combined the two flags of the Confederacy for the state of Mississippi, but it is unknown if this flag was ever raised over the state. The Mississippi flag that can be recognized today was made official in 1984. It offers three horizontal stripes of red, white, and blue that are equal in size and a "Union Square" in the upper left corner. The "Union Square" shows thirteen stars encircling 5 slightly larger stars encircling a single largest star. The thirteen stars are said to represent the 13 original colonies, however some feel this may have been for the 13 members of the confederate states. In 2001 a bill allowed for the creation of new designs of the flag and a popular vote for the new flag or to keep the original flag. In nearly a 2 to 1 vote it was determined that the original flag would continue to fly over Mississippi.
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