Washington State’s flag design was not officially adopted until 1923, which was more than 30 years after the state was permitted entry to the union. Until the flag was adopted and around the turn of the century, many of the cities and towns displayed a military flag that bore a gold profile of George Washington on blue bunting. There was another design used, which is similar to what is in use today, where a gold state seal was featured on a purple or green background. Displayed in the State Reception Room of the Legislative Building in the state capital of Olympia is a ceremonial banner of this type of flag.
The Washington State Secretary of State’s website states, “According to law (RCW 1.20.010), “The official flag of the state of Washington shall be of dark green silk or bunting and shall bear in its center a reproduction of the seal of the state of Washington embroidered, printed, painted or stamped thereon. The edges of the flag may, or may not, be fringed. If a fringe is used the same shall be of gold or yellow color of the same shade as the seal. The dimensions of the flag may vary.”
When displaying the Washington flag outdoors, it should not be flown earlier than sunrise or later than sunset; however, flying the flag 24 hours a day is permitted if directly illuminated during the hours of darkness. The flag should not be flown on days of inclement weather, unless an all weather flag is used.
The Washington state flag is required to be displayed on or near the administration building of every state facility. RCW (Revised Code of Washington) 1.20.15 states, “The flag of the United States and the flag of the state shall be prominently installed, displayed and maintain in schools, court rooms, and state buildings.”