It’s now been 50 years since we got our current flag. We have had many flags, seeing 12 different before this design came to be. This process brought up is what is known as the great flag debate, as History librarian at the Central library, Mark Richardson says it was a battle between liberals and conservatives.
“Lester Pearson being a liberal wanted us to have our own distinctive look, our own distinctive. Where more conservative people in Canada like Prime Minister Diefenbaker were much more keen on keeping the British empire connection.”
The maple leaf wasn’t the igniting point of the arguments and debates, the red bars we see today were the ones questioned.
Richardson adds that there were many designs being considered. Even ones kids drew and sent in. There were just so many ideas to choose from.
“Three maple leafs on them, the Union Jack, the beaver, there was a whole host of possibilities.”
The design was made by George F.G Stanley. He wanted a design easy for kids to draw but more importantly one that was recognizable.