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Fort Wayne, Indiana (U.S.)

Allen County

Last modified: 2024-07-06 by rick wyatt
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[Fort Wayne, Indiana flag] 2:3 image by Blas Delgado Ortiz, 22 December 2005
based on an image at

See also:

Current Flag

Text and image(s) from American City Flags, Raven 9-10 (2002-2003), courtesy of the North American Vexillological Association, which retains copyright. Image(s) from American City Flags by permission of David B. Martucci.


The flag of Fort Wayne has a dark blue field trisected by a white Y-shaped figure positioned horizontally. The top of the "Y" extends to both corners of the hoist, and its bottom bisects the fly. Overlying the center of the "Y" is a white circle with a blockhouse in red. Curved above the blockhouse is FORT WAYNE, below is INDIANA, on the hoist side 17, and on the fly side 94, all in dark blue. A silhouette of a male Native American head is centered in the hoist field, in red, with two feathers and in profile facing the fly. In the top fly field is a red fleur-de-lis and in the lower fly field, is an upright red lion, facing the fly.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003


The white "Y" represents the confluence of three rivers in the center of Fort Wayne: the St. Joseph (top hoist), the St. Mary's (bottom hoist), and the Maumee (fly). The blockhouse symbolizes the original Fort Wayne, established in 1794 by General Anthony Wayne, for whom the city is named. The Indian head recalls the early settlement of the Miami Indians near the city's current site. The fleur-de-lis recognizes the contribution of the French, who organized Fort Miami, the first fort on the site, as a trading post in the 1680s. The lion symbolizes the British, who captured Fort Miami in 1760 and occupied it until 1763, when the Indians reoccupied the site during Pontiac's Rebellion. Indians held the area until Gen. Wayne secured the land in 1794 for the fledgling United States.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003


The flag was selected through a contest, in 1916. (More details below.)
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003


Guy Drewitt, whose 1916 design is described (no picture is extant) as a blue field with a white Y and two small white stars, position unspecified, to recognize Fort Wayne's position as the second largest city in Indiana. Drewitt's original design was apparently used until 1934, when at the suggestion of a local citizen he modified the flag to its current design.
John M. Purcell, American City Flags, Raven 9-10, 2002-2003

More about the Flag


Section General Provisions
11.01 Corporate seal
11.02 City flag

(A)The seal of the city is a representation of Mercury's Wand, entwined with two serpents on the right, a sword on the left and a pair of scales on the top with the word "Ke-ki-on-ga" with the inscription "City of Fort Wayne, Indiana," around the outer edge. The seal's inside circle shall be white, the outside circle shall be blue and the remainder, gold.
(B)A facsimile of such seal is reproduced below:

[Insert seal art here]

('74 Code, § 1-10) (Am. Ord. G-95-72, passed - -72)

§ 11.02 CITY FLAG.
The official flag of the city shall be of the following design and proportion:
  1. The field shall be blue, in the center of which shall be superimposed a white, circular center.
  2. From the outer circumference of the white center three white bands shall extend: a horizontal band from the circumference of the white center to the middle of the hoist end of the blue field, a diagonal band from the circumference of the white center of the lower free corner of the blue field. The position of the inner edges of the two diagonal white bands shall coincide with the corner diagonals of the blue field from the circumference of the white center to the corner of the free end of the blue field, upper and lower, respectively.
  3. Superimposed upon the white center and contained within its circumference shall be a red block-fort silhouette. Superimposed upon the lower blue hoist field shall be a red fleur-de-lis silhouette. Superimposed upon the free-end blue field shall be a red conventional Indian head silhouette.
  4. The proportion scale of the flag and its several devices shall be as follows: Total length 36 units; total width, 24 units; diameter of the white center 12 units; width of the horizontal wide bands three units each; height of the block-fort in white center, eight units; height of the rampant lion, four units;height of the fleur-de-lis four units and height of the Indian head, five units.
  5. The shades of blue and red shall be those of the flag of the United States.
  6. The block house silhouette shall follow the conventional form made familiar by the late B.J. Griswold and frequently employed by him to depict the pioneer days of the city. One pattern which will be preserved and permanently available appears on the binding edge of the 1917 edition of Griswold's "The History of Fort Wayne," on record in the Fort Wayne Public Library.
  7. The rampant lion shall be the conventional design commonly known as the "British Lion."
  8. The fleur-de-lis shall be the conventional design commonly employed with reference to the French monarchy of the eighteenth century.
  9. The Indian head shall be the conventional profile commonly employed to represent an Indiana chief, with feather but no other head-dress.
  10. The words "Fort Wayne" or the abbreviation "Ft. Wayne" in standard block letters, blue upon the white band (or bands) or white upon either of the three blue fields, may be used at the discretion of the maker, but neither the word nor the abbreviation shall constitute a part of the official specifications of the emblems.
  11. The flag may be specially formed for vertical hanging, in which case the hoist end shall be the upper or bar end of the banner. When manufactured specially for vertical suspensions from the hoist (bar) end, the block-fort, the fleur-de-lis, the lion and the Indian head silhouettes may be rotated in such a manner that they appear in an upright position upon the vertically suspended fields.
  12. When used in connection with the United States flag, at any time or occasion whatsoever, the Fort Wayne flag shall be subordinated at the left or below the national colors.
('74 Code, § 1-11.)
Dov Gutterman, 18 June 2000

Selection of the flag (from the News-Sentinel, 14 June 2014)

Quoting Jaclyn Goldsborough, The News-Sentinel, 14 June 2014:


It was 1916 and Hoosiers throughout the Crossroads of America were celebrating the state's centennial. In Fort Wayne, the week-long celebration was one for the history books. With a historical pageant, concerts and even a special visit by former President William Howard Taft, the centennial celebration was also the driving force behind the Journal Gazette's flag-design competition.

Many submitted designs for the contest, but the ultimate winner of the contest was a young Fort Wayne man by the name of Guy Drewett. At the time, Drewett was 26 years old and courting Mahala Sroufe who helped him make the flag. Drewett entered in hopes of winning the $50 prize, and, according to family history, he experimented with numerous designs before settling on the final, simple design. The first flag, handmade by Sroufe from a royal blue fine silk, had a large “Y” in the center - representing the three rivers, St. Mary's, St. Joseph and the Maumee, as well as two white stars on each in the lower corners denoting Fort Wayne as the state's second city. Drewett was a smart man. After the contest was over, he went door-to-door selling cotton reproductions on the original flag to nearby neighbors who aptly supported him. He even had a clever slogan, ““Buy it from the GUY that DREW IT” - Guy Drewett, designer of the Fort Wayne Flag.”

Then in 1934, Drewett was approached by veteran and historian Col. Clyde Dreisbach about redesigning the flag to add more historical elements. The new designed featured a silhouette of a blockhouse representing the city's pioneer days. Also added was an Native American head, a French fleur-de-lis and a British lion. Each element tells it's own story of Fort Wayne's history. The French explorer LaSalle found an Indiana village called Kekionga at the confluence of the three rivers in 1670. Not many years after that, the French built a blockhouse and stockade - pictured in the flag - called Fort Miami. The fort was the first built in what is now Indiana and it served as a military outpost and trading center hence the French fleur-de-lis. After the British General James Wolfe defeated the French General Louis-Joseph, Marquis de Montcalm on Quebec's "Plains of Abraham" in 1759, the British took over all French forts, but they didn't kept them for long. This is represented by the British lion in the flag. Then, after two years of planning, Ottawa Indian Chief Pontiac called for a rebellion and in 1763 the fort fell. The Miami kept the fort until 1794 when "Mad Anthony" Wayne invaded the territory. The Miami heritage is represented by Native American head. When he finished his redesign he, once again, handed it off to his now wife - Mahala Drewett - to sew.
Later that same year, the City Council adopted the newly designed flag as the city's official flag on June 26, 1934. Then September, Guy proudly watched his wife raise the flag during the opening of Fort Wayne's water filtration plant.


As proud as the family is about their Fort Wayne legacy, the Drewett's decided to donate the original flag to the History Center in 1955. Today, Walter Font, curator of the History Center, protects the original flag. Tattered, worn and faded, the flag was covered in a protective Mylar in 1986, however, it still holds together beautifully. Font also has a cotton reproduction of the flag that Guy was selling door-to-door.

Ivan Sache, 3 October 2020

The Seal

[City Seal] image located by Paul Bassinson, 20 July 2019

Paul Bassinson, 20 July 2019

First flag

[Fort Wayne, Indiana flag] image by Ethan Dubrow, 22 June 2024
based on photo

Fort Wayne's first-ever flag is posted on Facebook. The flag consists of a white "pall" (official term for the horizontal 'Y' shape) on a dark blue background. Two white stars are by the edge.

Another image is posted at with description (archived here):
Here is Fort Wayne's new emblem of progress and civic patriotism. The dark portions are blue, the bars and stars white. The bars signify the union of the rivers in the heart of the city, the stars the importance of Fort Wayne as the second city in the state. The blue field typifies the loyalty of her citizenry and the white the purity of her civic life and government.

Here is the description from the original Facebook post:
In celebration of the state's centennial in 1916, The Journal Gazette solicited proposals in a competition to design Fort Wayne's first flag. The contest was inspired by city council's creation of a flag commission, and the winning design was announced 103 years ago today on April 16, 1916. The winner, Guy P. Drewett, received $50 for his submission of a flag with plain symbolism and two colors. More elaborate flags which received consideration are pictured in the background of an article about the contest. Colors cannot be discerned in the image, but some designs used common symbols and locally-relevant imagery. Stars were popular, as well as the Y-shaped bars. Symbols with historical significance included the head of a bear, possibly symbolizing Indiana's frontier roots; and corn or grain symbolizing Northeast Indiana's agricultural roots. Drewett's design included two stars, symbolizing Fort Wayne's status as "the second city in the state," and a bold Y, representing the confluence of the city's three rivers. To learn more about our first city flag, stop by the History Center to pick up the latest issue of the Old Fort News.

The flag is shown in use on a postcard from 1916: (archived here)

Ethan Dubrow, 24 April 2024

Fire Department flag

[Fire Department] image by Ethan Dubrow, 29 June 2024
based on photo

Southwood Park

[Southwood Park] image by David Sigley, 20 May 2023

The flag was created and adopted in October of 2020 by the Southwood Park Beautification Committee as a way to display their community pride. The flag is mentioned on the Historical Southwood Park's website, where you can purchase one.

The meaning of the Southwood Park flag in accordance to HSP:
BLUE. The blue background of our flag pays homage to our city's official flag color.
YELLOW. The acorn represents the sheltering white oaks under which our neighborhood was built and our commitment to keeping our tree canopy alive and well. It is enveloped in a yellow circle to represent our community and the friendliness of our neighbors and friends who reside here.
WHITE. The bold diagonal stripe on our official city flag represents the St. Mary's river. The St. Mary’s carves out the shape of our beloved Foster Park. So its only right to honor its importance to us on our neighborhood flag.

The flag was also covered by Input Fort Wayne.

Does your neighborhood need a flag? Southwood Park fills us in on placemaking efforts
Kara Hackett | November 2, 2020

As one of Fort Wayne’s most-desired near Downtown neighborhoods, Historic Southwood Park has long had a strong sense of community spirit in the 46807. Now, thanks to its neighborhood association, residents and businesses have a new way to share that pride in an official neighborhood flag.

In 2020, artist and Southwood Park Board Beautification Chair Sierah Barnhart designed Southwood Park’s first flag, paying homage to its beloved tree canopy, its welcoming community, and its connection to the St. Marys River at Foster Park.

Barnhart and fellow board members drew inspiration for their flag from a program called CincyFlags, led by the City of Cincinnati, Ohio. It is a grant-funded project that has created a custom flag for each of Cincinnati’s 52 neighborhoods, capturing and sharing their distinct identities through research and community input.

“A neighborhood flag can be a powerful placemaking tool to boost local pride about where you live,” Barnhart says. “I wish more neighborhoods in Fort Wayne could do it.”

David Sigley, 20 May 2023