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George F.G. Stanley Memorial

Hidden photo gallery

  • inscription
    (Click for more images)
  • Part of Stanley's March 23, 1964, letter to MP John Matheson, showing Canadian flag concept. The letter pre-dates the official announcement of a search for a new flag by almost two months.
  • Note by MP John Matheson, Dec. 15, 1964, House of Commons voted in favour of the new Canadian flag

Municipality/Province: Sackville, NB

Memorial Number: 13002-035

Type: Granite

Address: 66 Main Street

Location: Sackville Public Library

GPS Coordinates: Lat: 45.8961289   Long: -64.3696128

Submitted By: Victoria Edwards

The George F.G. Stanley Memorial was erected by the Town of Sackville and unveiled on Canada Day, 1 July, 1995. The memorial honours his many contributions to the Town of Sackville, the Province of New Brunswick and to Canada. George suggested the design for the Canadian Flag, which was officially inaugurated on February 15, 1965. The date now celebrated annually as National Flag of Canada Day.

A letter, dated March 23, 1964, was written by George Stanley, an eminent Canadian historian and Dean of Arts at the Royal Military College in Kingston. He suggested the Royal Military College's red-white-red design as a good basis for a distinctive Canadian flag. Dr. Stanley's letter was addressed to John Matheson, a Liberal MP from Brockville, who had emerged as then-Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson's pointman on the Government's issue: the promised adoption of a new and distinctive national flag.

"The single leaf has the virtue of simplicity," Stanley wrote. "It emphasizes the distinctive Canadian symbol and suggests the idea of loyalty to a single country."

"If the flag is to be a unifying symbol, it must avoid the use of national or racial symbols that are of a divisive nature."

George served in the Second World War, joined a team of military historians headed up by Charles Perry Stacey, and retired in 1946 as Deputy Director of the army's historical section. He was Lieutenant-Governor of New Brunswick from 1982 to 1987. For 10 years (1982-92) he was Honorary Colonel of the Royal New Brunswick Regiment. In 1976, he was awarded the Order of Canada and in 1995 he was promoted to the rank of Companion within the Order.

There is also an Honourable George Stanley Sculpture.

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Inscription found on memorial

ERECTED BY
THE TOWN OF SACKVILLE
TO COMMEMORATE
THE DESIGNER
OF THE CANADIAN FLAG
GEORGE F.G. STANLEY
C.C., C.D., K.St.J., D.Phil., LL.D.,
FORMER LIEUTENANT-GOVERNOR OF NEW
BRUNSWICK, PROFESSOR, HISTORIAN
SECOND WORLD WAR VETERAN AND FOR
MANY YEARS, CITIZEN OF SACKVILLE,
IN RECOGNITION OF HIS CONTRIBUTION
TO OUR TOWN, PROVINCE AND COUNTRY.
JULY 1, 1995.

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This information is provided by contributors and Veterans Affairs Canada makes it available as a service to the public. Veterans Affairs Canada is not responsible for the accuracy, currency or reliability of the information.

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