Marie Watkins Oliver has become known as “Missouri’s Betsy Ross” for designing our state flag. Oliver was from an influential family in Ray County. She married a soon-to-be senator, and moved to Cape Girardeau. While her husband was practicing law, she was put in charge of designing our state flag in 1908.

Oliver didn’t flag in her efforts, going to great lengths to incorporate everything Missouri stood for into the flag. Governor Elliot Major signed legislation recognizing the flag into law. The original flag is now on display at the Secretary of State’s office. 

Based upon content from the book Missouri 365: This Day in Missouri History by John W. Brown, broadcaster and Missouri historian. Get your copy at Reedy Press.

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