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Acadiana (U.S.)

Last modified: 2020-08-29 by rick wyatt
Keywords: acadiana | cajun | louisiana | united states | fleur-de-lis | castle | star | spain | france | acadia |
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Cajun Flag image by Pete Loeser, 1 July 2020



See also:


Situating Acadiana

Acadiana is a region in South Louisiana occupied by the Cajun French, who were exiles from Acadie (Nova Scotia, New Brunswick) after the British took over. The story of the Cajuns was made famous by Longfellow in his poem Evangiline. This region has a strong sense of community and though the flag is probably not recognized by any government body it is extremely popular. In fact the flag is as popular as the state flag in Lafayette.
Nathan Augustine


Description of the flag

The flag is "per fess" blue over red with a white triangle on the hoist. On the blue stripe are 3 white fleur-de-lis for France (which ruled Louisiana first). On the red stripe is a yellow 3 towered castle from the arms of Castile for Spain (to which the French ceded Louisiana before Napoleon got it back). And on the white triangle is a yellow star for the USA. The star is yellow instead of white to commemorate soldiers from Acadiana who fought in the American Revolution even though Louisiana was not part of the U.S. at the time.
Nathan Augustine

In 1965, Thomas J. Arceneaux of Lafayette Louisiana, former dean of Agriculture at the University of Southwestern Louisiana designed the Louisiana Acadian flag. A description of this flag follows:

To symbolize the French heritage and origin of the Acadians there are three silver fleur-des-lis on a blue background. To symbolize Spain, who governed Louisiana for 40 years and was in possession of the Louisiana territory when the Acadians arrived, the old arms of the Castille, a gold tower on a red field. The gold star on a white field represents "Our Lady of the Assumption", Patroness of the Acadians. The star also symbolizes the active participation of the Acadians in the American Revolution, as soldiers under Galvez.
Don Landry, 7 October 1997

The Cajun flag doesn't have a triangle at the hoist, but rather a rectangle stuck to a triangle. If some people doubt what I say, I invite them to consult the following references: Bizier, H-A and C. Paulette, Fleur de lys: d'hier a aujourd'hui, Montreal: Art Global, 1997.

I would also like to add the following information about the flag taken from Bizier and Paulette: it was adopted in 1965 by the Comité acadien and in 1972 by the Louisiana state.
Luc-vartan Baronian, 21 January 1998

As can be verified by numerous photos found online, the actual implementation of design varies a lot, beginning with the ratio, which is usually 2:3, but may be 3:5 as well, and some other values also appear sometimes. Shades of gold, blue and red also vary, the latter two typically being those used in the USA national flag. The charges are always centered vertically on their respective fields, but their positions may vary regarding the horizontal direction. Shapes of fleurs-de-lys and castle also vary a lot, but there seems to be a trend towards unification in recent years: the shapes seen in the image from Wikimedia Commons, which was created in 2006 and displayed at Wikipedia since 2009, are being increasingly used.

Sources:
[1] Louisiana Digital Media Archive - Photo of Cajun flag from 1985: http://ladigitalmedia.org/home/en-francais-acadian-history-culture (image: http://ladigitalmedia.org/assets/uploads/Acadian_Odyssey_1985.jpg)
[2] Alamy photo archive - Photo of USA, Cajun and Creole flags from Vermillionville, LA on 2010-06-04: https://www.alamy.com/stock-photo-wooden-desks-old-classroom-vermilionville-cajun-creole-heritage-folklife-30029559.html
[3] Alamy photo archive - Photo of USA and Cajun flags, place and date not specified: https://www.alamy.com/elementary-classroom-image236057754.html
[4] myNewOrleans.com website: https://www.myneworleans.com/the-louisiana-acadian-flag/
[5] Jerry and Anna Lee blog - Entry on 2013-04-27: http://jerryandannalee.blogspot.com/2013/04/cajun-immersion.html (image: http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-fR-WBcBB7oY/UXv08rypXmI/AAAAAAAAFfA/u0fbbk2XBVg/s1600/_DSC6603_8631.JPG
[6] Brews Travelers 365 website: https://brewstravelers365.com/2014/01/27/bayou-teche-brewing-in-arnaudville-la/ (image: https://brewstravelers365.files.wordpress.com/2014/01/dsc01192.jpg)
[7] Twitter - Photo of Cajun flag on 2017-09-04: https://twitter.com/absolutspacegrl/status/904498337021386752
[8] Country Roads magazine website: https://countryroadsmagazine.com/art-and-culture/people-places/top-me-off/
[9] Gramho website - Instagram photo of Cajun flag from 2013: https://gramho.com/media/482625483097578691
[10] Gramho website - Instagram photo of Cajun flag from 2017: https://gramho.com/media/1409160174857773052
[11] Gramho website - Instagram photo of Cajun flag from 2017: https://gramho.com/media/1544363230683436749
[12] Gramho website - Instagram photo of Cajun flag from 2018: https://gramho.com/media/1574841331548526675
[13] Gramho website - Instagram photo of Cajun flag from 2019: https://gramho.com/media/2145229048715272197
[14] Gramho website - Instagram photo of Cajun flag from 2019: https://gramho.com/media/2181817628920746326
[15] Reddit - Photo of Cajun flag from 2019: https://www.reddit.com/r/Acadiana/comments/b7gnve/our_proud_flag/
[16] Reddit - Photo of Cajun flag from 2020: https://www.reddit.com/r/Louisiana/comments/efal22/cajun_flag/
[17] Reddit - Photo of Cajun flag from 2020: https://www.reddit.com/r/vexillology/comments/gpez3n/acadiana_flag_spotted_in_chicago/
[18] Flickr - Photo of Cajun flag on 2017-08-03: https://www.flickr.com/photos/alain_quevillon/35546728523
[19] Wikimedia Commons - Flag of Acadiana: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Flag_of_Acadiana.svg
[20] Flag of Acadiana at Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flag_of_Acadiana

Tomislav Todorovic, 26 July 2020


 
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