Skip to main content

Tennessee Tartan

Tennessee State Tartan

Official State Tartan of Tennessee

The Tennessee tartan was designated the official state tartan in 1999 to acknowledge Tennessee’s Scottish heritage. All State Tartans

Scottish ancestry is widely celebrated throughout the state. "Scottish, Scots-Irish Heritage Day" (June 24) is one of Tennessee's official days of observance. The Tennessee tartan was created by the Heart of Tennessee Scottish Celebration in conjunction with all the other Scottish societies in the state.

A tartan is usually made of wool, and is woven with a unique pattern of multicolored stripes. A tartan pattern is traditionally called a "sett." When woven, the sett is mirrored in all directions and defined by a particular thread count. The Tennessee tartan uses the following colors:

WHITE represents the unity of the three Grand Divisions of the State of Tennessee
DARK GREEN represents the importance of agriculture to the state
PURPLE represents the state flower (iris)
RED represents the sacrifices made by Tennessee soldiers and pioneers
DARK BLUE represents the mountains of Tennessee

History of Tartans

In old Scotland, the tartan was used for clothing. Because a family or community worked the cloth together, their clothing was made of the same patterns. In the eighteenth century clan tartans were adopted and a person could be recognized by the tartan they wore. Tartans can also be designed as a symbol to commemorate a special event or person.