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Chambersburg Council divided over look of borough flag

March 25, 2008|By DON AINES

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - The borough of Chambersburg has existed for more than two centuries without a flag and Councilman Heath Talhelm observed on Monday that it can probably get by without one for another month or two.

Designs for a borough standard have been run up a metaphorical flag pole in recent weeks, but nothing that all members of the council can agree to salute - or come to a vote on.

"We're a deliberative body," Council President William McLaughlin said after Monday's meeting.

Talhelm said he prefers a design similar to the one first shown to the council several weeks ago, the Memorial Square fountain inside the Pennsylvania Keystone on a blue field with red and white stripes across the top and bottom.

"I don't like that fountain," said Councilman Robert Wareham. "It doesn't look like the fountain."

Councilman Tom Newcomer reviewed some ideas for the design, which some council members said they would prefer to feature the cupola and clock tower of the Borough Hall. The cupola is motif featured on borough letterhead, vehicles and its Web site, but is more a logo than official symbol.

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"Council has never adopted an official seal," Newcomer said.

Both the fountain and cupola have their supporters who think one or the other should be a centerpiece of the flag design. The cupola dates to 1830, while the fountain, a memorial to the town's war dead, featuring the statue of a Union soldier facing south to guard against another Confederate incursion, was dedicated in 1878, Newcomer said.

How many elements should be included in the designs was also debated. Councilwoman Sharon Bigler also likes the fountain, but thought the idea of having it, the cupola and the keystone "too busy."

McLaughlin suggested two or more designs be put before the public for a vote at this summer's ChambersFest.

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