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The first flag to specifically represent Newfoundland is thought to have been an image of a green fir tree on a pink background that was in use in the early 19th century. The first official flag identifying Newfoundland, flown by vessels in service of the colonial government, was the Newfoundland Blue Ensign, adopted in 1870 and used until 1904, when it was modified slightly. In 1904, the crown of the Blue Ensign was replaced with the Great Seal of Newfoundland having been given royal approval in 1827 and the British Parliament designated Newfoundland Red and Blue ensigns as official flags specifically for Newfoundland. The Red and Blue ensigns with the Great Seal of Newfoundland in the fly were used officially from 1904 until 1965, with the Red Ensign being flown as civil ensign by merchant shipping, and the Blue being flown by governmental ships (after the British tradition of having different flags for merchant/naval and government vessel identification).