Curious Why Does the Honduras Flag have Five Stars?
Many travelers to Central America make two different questions. Why are the Central American Flags blue and white? Why does the Honduras flag have five stars and what does it mean?
To find the answer, we must go back and do a history check. During Spanish colonial times, the territory that today comprises Central America was part of New Spain. An independence war started in 1810 in the states of Guanajuato and Queretaro, today part of Central Mexico. To better administrate the Colony, the Viceroy in New Spain set up an administrative center. Thus crating the “Capitania General de Guatemala”. This administrative center was in charge of 7 Central American Provinces. These included Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Chiapas and Soconusco. (These last two are part of modern Mexico to this day).
The First Central American Flag
Some historians claim that the first Central American flag was inspired on the Argentine flag. The flag has two light blue horizontal bars separated by a white one. In 1819, an Argentine – French corsair sailed into the port of El Realejo, on the Pacific Coast of Nicaragua. The ship was under the command of General Hipolito Bouchard. The corsairs took possession of several Spanish ships and defeated the Spanish Army defending the port. The corsairs’ ship “Argentina” flew the Argentine flag on her mast. Shortly thereafter, Manuel Jose Arce, put together the first Central American flag. General Arce, from El Salvador, was a fierce opponent of Central America’s integration to Mexico. This flag was first seen in 1822. This flag represented the United Provinces of Central America. It was reputedly inspired in the flag that was on the “Argentina”
During the following years Central America found itself in an ideological crossroads. Should the 5 provinces stay united and form a federation, or should they each be independent? Over the years, different flags were used. But they were all based on the two blue bars separated by a white one. For a few years, Tegucigalpa became the Capital of the Central American Federation. Perhaps the most serious commitment to the idea of a Central American Federation came from Honduras. Honduran leader, Francisco Morazan fought hard to see this dream come true.
Central Americas Flags are all Alike!
Today, the flags of Nicaragua and El Salvador are similar and even hard to distinguish. The only difference being an emblem in the middle. Guatemala retained the colors, but placed the blue bars vertically. Honduras has 5 stars instead of an emblem. Costa Rica added a red bar in the middle of their flag.
The blue on either side of the flag symbolizes the fact that Central America is between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. The white in the middle is a symbol of prosperity and hope for a great future.
In the case of Honduras, the 5 stars represent each of the 5 Central American Countries. It is a sign of hope that sometime in the future, Central America could unite and be stronger, more prosperous territory.
This dream is still in the hearts of many Central Americans. The fact is that today there is a Central American Parliament. There is also a Central American Court of Justice. Central American Citizens have free transit throughout the region. This proves that a United Central America is possible.
Time will tell, but for now, I guess you know the answer to the question of why does the Honduras flag have five stars?