Exploration by the Spanish and French, in the 17th and 18th centuries, Oregon was mapped by the Lewis and Clark expedition in their search for the Northwest Passage.
In 1805 the Lewis and Clark expedition explored the area.John Jacob Astor\’s fur depot, Astoria, was founded in 1811. Disputes for control of Oregon between American settlers and the Hudson Bay Company were finally resolved in the 1846 Oregon Treaty, in which Great Britain gave up claims to the region.
Depicted on the shield, is a blazing sun setting over the Pacific Ocean, mountains, forests and a Conestoga wagon all representing the natural resources and splendor of Oregon and the early settlers to the territory. A plow, a sheaf of wheat and a pickax represent the early industry of the state; agriculture and mining. Two ships are shown; a British Man-of-War and an American trade vessel.
The flag of Oregon consists of a blue base with a simplified version of the state seal, in gold, in the center. The State of Oregon is written in gold above the seal and it has 1859 written below the seal. The state\’s colors are blue and gold. The shield on the front of the flag is surrounded by 33 stars, which represent Oregon as the 33rd state admitted to the Union. The bald eagle on the crest of the shield is the national bird of America, it represents the United States and the protection it provides Oregon in turbulent and peaceful times. A banner on the shield shows The Union, representing Oregon\’s support to the US. The shield is divided into three parts: the top section shows the sun setting over the Pacific Ocean, a British man-of-war sailing away the American coast and an American merchant ship arriving. It represents the end of British rule and the start of American sovereignty.
The crest of the shield is the American eagle. Also displayed is a banner with the words \”The Union.\” The eagle and the banner express support for \”The Union\” that Oregon joined in 1859.
There is a barrage of cheap and inferior Oregon flags being imported and sold, that do not comply with the flag statute. This is bad for a number of reasons. Imported flags are cheaply made and inferior to American-made Oregon flags, but more importantly, the designs, materials, colors and methods of printing do not compare well with the better quality, longer-lasting, and correctly designed flags made by American manufacturers. The Flag Company Inc specialized in flag designs offered a special edition of decals and flags to memorize the history of Oregon flag for the future.