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Act of the Georgia General Assembly designating the official state tartan (May 1, 1997)

Act of the Georgia General Assembly

May 1, 1997


Code Section 50-3-75 Enacted

No. 480 (House Bill No. 644).


To amend Article 3 of Chapter 3 of Title 50 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to other state symbols, so as to designate the official tartan of the State of Georgia; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.

WHEREAS, the Georgia tartan was introduced to the public for the first time in 1982 at the First International Gathering of the Scottish Clans ever held in the United States at the Stone Mountain Highland Games and Scottish Festival; and

WHEREAS, the Georgia tartan was designed at the request of the Stone Mountain Highland Games, Inc., by the Scottish Tartan Society in Comrie, Perthshire, Scotland, and presented to Governor George Busbee in 1982 in honor of Georgia’s 250th birthday. On October 1, 1996, the Scottish Tartans Society issued its Certificate of Accreditation for this tartan; and

WHEREAS, both the pattern and colors of the Georgia Tartan are a reflection of this state’s strong ties with Scotland. The pattern, or “sett,” comes from the earliest known Mackintosh tartan; it was John Mohr Mackintosh and his Oglethorpe, repulse Spanish invaders and keep Georgia a British Colony; and

WHEREAS, the red and light blue come from the Royal Tartan from the reign of King George II, which was worn by the Royal Company of Archers, the King’s personal bodyguards in Scotland. The green and black are from what once was the “government” pattern worn by Mackintosh’s troops and since has become world famous as the tartan worn by the Royal Highland Regiment, “The Black Watch”; and

WHEREAS, Peter McDonald, the great Scottish tartan weaver and tartan design expert who designed the Georgia tartan and wove it for the first time, said he selected the color blue for the beautiful Georgia sky, the red for our rich red Georgia clay, and the green for our beautiful forests; and

WHEREAS, the Georgia tartan is so special because this state’s very history is woven into the fabric. It is a tartan any Georgia Scot and any proud Georgian can wear with pride.



Article 3 of Chapter 3 of Title 50 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to other state symbols, is amended by adding at the end thereof a new Code section to read as follows:


(a) The Georgia tartan is designated as the official tartan of Georgia.

(b) The Georgia tartan is that tartan accredited in Certificate Number 96027 by the Council of the Scottish Tartans Society of Scotland and is described as follows: 72 green, 4 black, 4 green, 4 black, 6 green, 24 black, 20 azure, 40 red.”


All laws and parts of laws in conflict with this Act are repealed.

Approved May 1, 1997.

Ga. Laws 1997, pp. 1557-1559.