May 22, 2019

Flag Day June 14

Betsy Ross is the seamstress who made our country’s flag. She made George Washington’s clothes and was commissioned by him to make our flag.

We, as Americans, should show respect for our flag as a representative of our independence and unity as a nation – one nation under God, indivisible. Our flag has a proud and glorious history, for it is and has been the lead for every battle fought by Americans. Many people have died protecting it.

On June 14, 1777, the Continental Congress made a report to a special committee which had been assigned to suggest a design for the flag.

The flag of the United States shall have thirteen stripes of alternate red and white with a union of thirteen white stars in a field of blue representing the new constellation.

This flag was carried into battle on September 11, 1777 at the Battle of Brandywine and was first saluted by a foreign naval vessel on February 14, 1778, when the Ranger, bearing the Stars and Stripes under the command of Captain John Paul Jones arrived at a French port.

The flag first flew over a foreign territory in early 1778 at Nassau, Bahamas, where the Americans captured a British fort.

The adoption of the flag was not soon coming. After an entire century, the first celebration took place at Hartford, Connecticut. In the summer of 1861, schools all over the United States held Flag Day programs to contribute to the Americanization of immigrant children.

The observance caught on in individual communities. On June 14, 1889, a professor, principal of a poor kindergarten in New York City, had his school to hold a patriotic ceremony to observe the anniversary of Flag Day, which attracted the attention of the Department of Education, who had the day observed in all public schools thereafter.

betsy-ross-house-03Soon the state legislatures passed laws, making it the responsibility of the states’ education superintendents to ensure that all schools hold observances for Lincoln’s Birthday, Washington’s Birthday, Memorial Day, and Flag Day.

Governors and other organizations became aware of the need to observe Flag Day and recognized the need for a legal holiday.

President Wilson, in 1916, and President Coolidge, in 1927, issued proclamations asking for June 14 to be observed as the National Flag Day, but it wasn’t until August 3, 1949, that Congress approved the national observance and President Truman signed it into law.

As Americans, we have every right to be proud of our culture, our nation, and our flag. So Raise the Flag today and every day with pride.

Mary H. Lane

(Note: Mary is the Out-going President of Heard County 2587 Chapter UDC and the Historian of the James Stewart Chapter DAR.)

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