The Puerto Rican Flags represent the believes of the people, while the current flag represents the Commonwealth of the people. The different flags of the municipalities represent the different islands and regions.
The people of the Commonwealth designed the current flag that is flown in Puerto Rico, in 1952. Ramon Emeterio Betances designed the first flag. However, the life of the flag was short lived.
The original flag has three red horizontal stripes separated by two white stripes. On the left side of the flag, there is a triangle with the tip ending at the center of the flag in blue with a large white star in the center of the triangle. The flag is sometimes used to show protest and defiance. One occasion where the Puertorican flag made history was when it was aboard the Space Shuttle Discovery, when Joseph Acaba was aboard. He carried the flag aboard on his person as a symbol of his heritage, which is Puerto Rican.
There are seventy-eight municipal flags of Puerto Rico and some are tributes to the Caciques, which belong to the Taino tribes that settled and ruled the island until the Spaniards arrived. In 1898 though 1952, it was illegal to show the flag. It was a felony if you were caught displaying the flag because of the annexation of the United States with PR. However, in 1952, newly elected Governor Marin, adopted the flag and it was again flown with pride.
The white bars of the flag represent republican government. The only United States Flag to be flown in Puerto Rican to replace its own flag was the forty-five star flag. Today, you will only see the National Flag of Puerto Rico flying as the first flag on the staff.