Red, White, & Blue are our National colors. Dark Blue and gold symbolize the sea of excellence. The stars commemorate the SEVEN battle stars awarded for WWII service of the previous ASHLAND. The wavy division of the shield highlights the shoreline while the chevron simulates the prow of a ship, alluding to the LSD's theater of operations and amphibious mission of delivering forces ashore. The pale vertical bar suggests the numeral "I," honoring the previous ASHLAND's historic role as the first ship in the LSD class. The Mameluke, together with the gold palm on the red background suggest the Marine force and underscores cooperation and military preparedness.
The bald eagle symbolizes the distinguished American Statesman Henry Clay and his vital magisterial role in both the United States Congress and the development of our country. LSD 48 is named in honor of Ashland, the Kentucky estate of Henry Clay. Our national bird embodies the tenets of liberty and freedom with majesty and strength. The wreath of laurel conveys honor and achievement.
"Deliver Liberty, Defend Freedom" exemplifies the spirit and the strength of character of the Honorable Henry Clay. It clearly illustrates the mission and capabilities of the combined Navy/Marine Corps team for which the ship was designed. It epitomizes the strength, drive, and courage that has made our country the proud nation it is today.