Adopted by proclamation on February 24, 1965, the symbols on the flag were taken directly from the Armoral Bearings originally granted to New Brunswick in 1868 by Queen Victoria..

The gold lion on a red background represents the Duchy of Brunswick, a possession of Britain's King George III who ruled in the year of New Brunswick's creation in 1784. The galley, with oars in the water, represents New Brunswick's early seafaring industrial history.