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Acre (Brazil)

Last modified: 2012-10-06 by ian macdonald
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[Flag of Acre (Brazil)] 7:10 by Joseph McMillan
Officially adopted 15 March 1921, confirmed 1 March 1963

See also:

The Flag of the State of Acre

The Acre flag is split diagonally from the upper fly to the lower hoist. The upper part is yellow and the lower part green. In the yellow, near the hoist, is located the "lone star" (estrela solitária) that symbolizes the light that guided those who supported the incorporation of the Acre territory into Brazil. Yellow symbolizes peace and green hope, according to José Plácido de Castro, who adapted the ancient design of the revolutionary era to the proposal of Colonel Rodrigo de Carvalho, leader of an earlier revolution in the area. The basic design had been adopted by Don Luís Galvez Rodriguez de Arias. The flag was officially adopted by Governor Epaminondas Jacome.
Jaume Ollé, 28 June 1996

Acre was constituted as a federal territory of Brazil on 25 February 1904. The territorial governor adopted a revised form of the Galvez-Castro flag as the territorial flag on 15 March 1921, with the direction of the diagonal dividing line and the position of the yellow and green triangles reversed, as at present. It is not clear whether this change was made for the first time in 1921 or if it had already occurred de facto before then. The territory of Acre became a state on 15 June 1962 under federal law no. 4070. Its Constitution, adopted 1 March 1963, states (Title II, Chapter I, Article 8) that "The symbols of the state shall be the flag, hymn, and arms that were adopted by the Independent State of Acre."
Joseph McMillan, 15 August 2002

A new coat of arms was adopted by resolution of 24 May 1922 by Governor Jacome and General Secretary Francisco de Oliveira Conde.
Jaume Ollé, 22 July 2003

About 1978 I asked for information about the Acre flag. Profesor Arthur Luponi sent me a printed construction sheet of the flag showing the ratio as 7:10. [The image above is based on this construction sheet - ed.] Based on that, I believe that the proportion of the first flag was 11:20 but when adopted as the territorial (and later state) flag, it was in the proportions 7:10 like the national Brazilian flag. Yes, Whitney Smith gives 11:20 as the proportions, but he must be confusing the current flag with that of the first decree.
Jaume Ollé, 25 August 2002

The decree of 15 March 1921 signed by Governor Epaminondas Jacome adopting the territorial flag is transcribed in Luponi's article in the Flag Bulletin giving the proportions 11:20, but was changed later.
Jaume Ollé, 22 July 2003

At the on-line edition of Jornal A Tribuna is a story from August 2002 to the effect that the Acre state government is building a 60 meter (197 ft) flagpole in connection with the centennial of Acre's definitive joining of Brazil. The pole will fly a 12 x 17 meter (39 x 56 ft) flag. This news story supports a 7:10 ratio for the Acre state flag, since 12:17 is, for all practical purposes, 7:10.
Joseph McMillan, 8 October 2002


Evolution of the Acrean Flag

Flag of the Independent State of Acre, 1899-1900

Independent State of 
Acre, 1899-1900 11:20 by Joseph McMillan

The flag of Acre originates from that created by decree no. 17 of 1889, issued by Luiz Galvez Rodrigues de Arias, leader of the 1899-1900 expedition seeking to seize control of what is now Acre from Bolivia. According to Klein, this flag was a diagonal bicolor in the Brazilian national colors, divided from upper hoist to lower fly, green over yellow. That this flag did not have a star on it seems a reasonable conclusion from the fact that the presence of the star is attributed to Acrean leaders who were not involved in this first revolt (see below).
Joseph McMillan, 15 August 2002

I have just come across a reference to the original flag of Acre when the territory was disputed between Bolivia and Brazil at the turn of the nineteenth/twentieth centuries. The reference is not in a flag book, but in Lizzie: A Victorian Lady's Amazon Adventure, published in 1985 by the BBC. It concerns the story of a young woman from London whose husband was a manager for a rubber company operating in the area. The relevant passage (p.128) says:

"Luis Galvez Rodriguez, a Spanish colonist, born leader and inept politician, proclaimed independence unilaterally--the slogan "Acre for the Acreanos" was chanted the length and breadth of the river, and on 14 July 1899 Luis Galvez named himself President of the fledgling republic of Acre. With a band of rubber tappers Galvez took possession of the aggravating [Bolivian] Customs post and raised the revolutionary flag, a yellow and green diagonal bearing a red star, embellished with the traditional cap of liberty, a shield, a laurel wreath and the date, '14 de Julho 1899'."
The story of the Acre flag above gives this historical context, but makes no mention of the embellishments referred to above, and says that this original flag had no red star. Lizzie doesn't give sources--it isn't an academic work--but its general tone and style give the impression that it is reliable and competent. Can anyone comment on the flag design it mentions?
André Coutanche, 11 July 2003

Arthur Luponi ("The Flags of the States of Brazil: Acre," Flag Bulletin IX:28-35 (Winter 1970) says that the first Acre flag was adopted 15 July 1899. There's a drawing of Galvez in his office where the flag can be seen clearly with the star (to his left) and without the star (to his right), and the arms, which have a Phrygian cap and two laurel wreaths above a oval on the upper part of which Patria is written in a semicircle, on the lower part liberadade, also in a semicircle, and the letter "e" ("and") in the center: Patria e liberdade, meaning Fatherland and freedom. The illustration came from Diario de Notícias, Manaus, 23 December 1899.
Jaume Ollé, 22 July 2003

Readopted with changes as territory flag by decree of 15 March 1921 signed by governor Epaminondas Jacome and confirmed by the constitution dated 1 March 1963 Decree is transcribed in FB giving proportions 11:20 as Smith stated, but was changed later, perhaps according the law 5443 dated 28 May 1968 that established that no flag can flow being greatest that the national Brazilian flag. The star must be "in the center of the yellow triangle that forms the upper part of the flag" The arms 1899-1900 were different from the ones dated 1902-1903. The 1899 arms were described before. The 1902 arms are pictured and they are described: On an oval shield, framed by the name of the state and the date of its proclamation of independence (Estado Independente do Acre 7 de Agosto de 1902) appears a river, a star and a jaguar beneath a palm tree. The shield is supported by four Acre flag (with star in canton, in the yellow, and diagonal from lower hoist to upper fly, being the green part in the fly) and a wreath. Above is the cap of liberty, below are crossed swords and a anchor. The whole is set on a glory (like the one in the national arms). The motto "Libertas Quae sera Tamen" (Liberty whatever else) is the famous slogan of the 1789 revolutionaries. There's a note that say. "According Clovis Ribeiro in Brazoes e bandeiras do Brasil p. 147, the revolutionaries of 1899 hoisted a flag with this motto ob 26 August of that year" New coat of arms was adopted 24 Mayo 1922 resolution by Governor Jacome and General Secretary Francisco de Oliveira Conde

Pedro Aguiar reported a white-green-white Acrean flag with a silver star in the upper white and green stripes, but I cannot find any confirming information. A white-green-white flag could have been used (a) between 1 May 1889, when the Brazilian population gained control over the territory, and 14 July 1889, when Luis Galvez proclaimed the first Acrean republic, or (b) from the proclamation of the republic until the unknown date of adoption of the green-yellow flag. The first republic lasted until March 1900. It's known that the second republic (November 1900-24 December 1900) used the green and yellow flag.
Jaume Ollé, 25 August 2002


Flag of the Third Acrean Republic, 1902-1903

Third Acrean 
Republic, 1902-0311:20 by Joseph McMillan

The forces of Plácido de Castro, leader of the third and final Acrean revolt in 1902-03, are reported to have flown the same flag used by Galvez, but with a red star added to the yellow field. The idea of adding the star is credited to the leader of the second revolution (Nov-Dec 1900), Colonel Rodrigo de Carvalho. Ironically, this made the three colors of the Acrean flag the same as those of Bolivia. Klein shows an image of this flag--green over yellow, upper hoist to lower fly, with the red star in the hoist on the yellow area, and with unusually long, narrow proportions.
Joseph McMillan, 15 August 2002

The 1899 flag was readopted on 7 August 1902 and suppressed in 1903. The arms were different from the ones dated 1899-1900. The 1902 arms are pictured in Luponi and are described: On an oval shield, framed by the name of the state and the date of its proclamation of independence (Estado Independente do Acre 7 de agosto de 1902) appears a river, a star and a jaguar beneath a palm tree. The shield is supported by four Acre flags (with star in canton, in the yellow, and diagonal from lower hoist to upper fly, being the green part in the fly) and a wreath. Above is the cap of liberty, below are crossed swords and a anchor. The whole is set on a glory (like the one in the national arms). The motto Libertas quae sera tamen (Liberty whatever else) is the famous slogan of the 1789 revolutionaries. There's a footnote that says, "According to Clóvis Ribeiro in Brazões e bandeiras do Brasil, p. 147, the revolutionaries of 1899 hoisted a flag with this motto on 26 August of that year."
Jaume Ollé, 22 July 2003


Sources:

  • Major Klauss Erich Klein, "Bandeiras Históricas"
  • Brazilian Senate website
  • Arthur Luponi, "The Flags of the States of Brazil: Acre," Flag Bulletin IX:28-35 (Winter 1970)
  • Page on the flag of Acre at www.brasilrepublica.hpg.ig.com.br

    History of Acre

    Because of the area's wealth in rubber, the Brazilians were interested in Acre from the middle of the 19th century. The first to arrive came in 1852, continued in 1861 and in subsequent years. The arrival of Brazilian colonists in considerable numbers started in 1877 (3 April).

    Though the territory was under Bolivian sovereignty by virtue of the Hispano-Portuguese Treaty of 1750, the Bolivians had no presence in the zone. When Colonel Pando staged a coup d'état in Bolivia against President Aniceto Arce and failed, he took refuge in Brazil and learned of the situation in Acre where the Brazilian colonists were taking possession of the region.

    Pando alerted the Bolivian government and began diplomatic maneuvers. In 1898 Bolivia established access to Acre, which caused the armed revolt of the Brazilian inhabitants with the support of the authorities of the State of Amazonas (1 May 1899). Under pressure from Attorney José Carvalho, the Bolivians were forced to abandon the zone. To avoid the return of the Bolivians, the governor of Amazonas, Ramalho Júnior, organized the entry into the region of a unit of adventurers under the command of Luis Galvez Rodriguez de Arias, a Spaniard, who left from Manaus on 4 June 1899, arriving at the Bolivian establishment called Puerto Alonso, which Galvez renamed Porto Acre, proclaiming there the Republic of Acre on 14 July 1899. In spite of this, the Brazilian government considered Acre Bolivian territory by virtue of international treaties (especially one signed in Ayacucho in 1867), so it supported diplomatically a Bolivian military force that suppressed the Acre Republic on 15 March 1900.

    Soon afterward, the Bolivian force in Acre was blockaded in Porto Acre by the Brazilians of the region, who again received help from the governor of Amazonas, Silvério Neri, by means of a new expedition (called the Expedition of the Poets) under command of the journalist Orlando Correa Lopez, which proclaimed the Second Republic of Acre (November 1900) with Rodrigo de Carvalho as president.

    Defeated by the Bolivians (24 December 1900), the Second Republic was also suppressed. On 6 August 1902 a Brazilian soldier called José Plácido de Castro, sent by Governor Neri of Amazonas, arrived in Acre and began the so-called Acrean Revolution. The rebels took all the region except Porto Acre, which was not yielded until 24 January 1903. On 27 January 1903, the Third Republic of Acre was proclaimed, this time relying on the support of Brazilian President Rodrigues Alves and his Foreign minister, the Baron of Rio Branco, who ordered the occupation of a part of Acre. There the territorial government of North Acre was established under the rule of General Olímpio da Silveira.

    In Bolivia, Colonel Pando had become president, and he marched with troops to fight the revolutionaries. Before any significant combat occurred, Brazilian and Bolivian representatives signed a preliminary peace agreement (21 March), ratified afterwards in the Treaty of Petrópolis (17 November 1903), by which Bolivia relinquished all the territory to Brazil in exchange for other territories in Mato Grosso.

    Acre was converted to a Brazilian federal territory by the Law of 25 February 1904 and executive decree of 7 of April 1904. It was elevated to statehood on 15 June 1962.

    The former Acre president, Plácido de Castro, died on 11 August 1908.
    Jaume Ollé, 28 June 1996


    Government Flag

    Third Acrean image located by Valentin Poposki, 23 September 2012

    The flag of the Government of Acre, State of Acre, Brazil, is a plain white flag with the arms centred on it.