The flag of America is one of the distinctive flags in the world, as it contains many colors and symbols that aim for a specific thing, to learn about its implications, the history of this flag since its beginnings and the myths that affected it, in addition to the American flag feast.
The United States of America, or simply America, is the country that is said to be a destination for the inhabitants of the Earth, and it is called the Great Country.
It is the giant country that includes within it 50 states that were once scattered countries when the American continent was discovered in the fifteenth century by the Italian sailor Christopher Columbus.
We are in 2022, and America today is one of the largest countries on the face of the earth.
But what is the story of this flag? How did he get to this shape? What are the meanings of the colors of the flag? Did it keep its shape from the start? Or did it differ according to the different stages that America has gone through since its discovery until today, through the English colonialism and the American revolution against them?
Let’s go through history and learn the answers to what we asked previously.
The red, white and blue threads intertwine in it to tell the story of a country and a people that suffered a lot until it reached what it is today.
The flag is not only a symbol of freedom, but extends to represent the citizens of this country and glimpses an ancient history and glory carefully written by the people.
In the era of English colonialism and before the American Revolution, the situation was not as it is now.
Rebellious stripe flag
The history of the American flag as we know it today begins before the United States was a unified country and many flags were flown throughout the original 13 colonies.
In 1765, the Sons of Liberty designed a flag with nine vertical stripes, but Britain banned the new flag and banned its circulation on the grounds that the stripes were indicative of rebellion.
The group then changed the design, making it 13 red and white stripes (representing the 13 colonies) on the flag.
Then, ten years later, Benjamin Franklin or George Washington designed the Grand Union flag, also known as the “continental colors” for use by troops.
What happened to the flags when the outbreak of the American Revolution?
Many flags were carried when the revolution broke out against Britain!
When the American Revolution broke out in 1775, the colonists did not unite under one flag, instead essentially fighting under the flags of units or regiments, and they said that there were flags depicted with a picture of a coiled serpent bearing the slogan “Don’t Step on Me” Which Don’t walk on me.
There was another flag during the revolution with a pine tree written on it, with the words “A Call to Heaven.”
There wasn’t really anything, red, blue, or white stars or stripes, says Mike Boss, a science expert for the veterans’ organization. The flag was quite different.
They said that such flags were carried by the forces that rose up against Britain as a sign of the attempt to get out from under its cloak.
“The first national American flag”
The Great Union flag or what is also called (the flag of the continental colors or the flag of the Congress or the flag of Cambridge) is the first national flag of the United States of America.
It was adopted in 1775 at the outbreak of the American Revolution in the face of British occupation.
This flag consists of 13 red and white stripes drawn on its upper side in the left side of the British Union flag at that time.
But when the war and revolution broke out in America, the situation changed completely, and a new flag was created after the Congress meeting at that time.
Some historians claim that George Washington, the commander-in-chief of the army at the time, ordered the raising of a flag called the Continental Colors flag the day after New Year’s Day during the siege of British-occupied Boston, and this was considered by some as a surrender to Britain, while many denied this story completely.
13 stars and similar colors in the era of occupation!
Legend has it that in 1776, George Washington and two others visited Betsy Ross’ home in Philadelphia and asked her to make a new flag. The Betsy Ross flag was one of the oldest American flags made of stars and stripes.
Indeed, in 1777, when the US Congress ratified the flag of the United States for the first time, it was never in its current form, and did not contain thirteen stripes and fifty stars as is the case today.
Although the flag is still red, white, and blue as it was back then, it had only thirteen stars and stripes. These stripes represented the original thirteen colonies of the United States that were fighting against Britain:
Delaware – Pennsylvania – New Jersey – Georgia – Connecticut – Massachusetts – Maryland – South Carolina – New Hampshire – North Carolina – Rhode Island and Providence Farms – Virginia – New York.
A symbol that unites Americans, what do the stars and colors in the American flag represent?
The colors of the flag were initially not given any official meaning when the first flag was adopted in 1777 by the then Congress.
Then, after five years, in 1782, Charles Thomson came and gave the traditional meanings assigned to colors, whose meanings have remained unchanged to this day!
The flag is a unifying symbol that connects Americans from east to west and from north to south across all of America, and these are the meanings of the colors:
-stars and blue
Each state has its own star, which is stitched into a blue background, representing vigilance, perseverance, and justice.
– red lines
The red stripes symbolize valor and courage.
– white lines
White color indicates purity and innocence.
The Americans agreed that the design of the American flag can be changed as it happened before, and it may change later, but the red, white and blue colors remain unchanged, and the reason for this is that these colors represent the characteristics of the American people and the nation throughout history.
-27 review of the flag!
Many years later, Francis Scott Key wrote America’s national anthem when he watched the American flag wave and flutter during a battle in the War of 1812 as he wrote the famous words of the anthem.
If you visit Washington DC, you can see the original and real flag that was waving over Fort McHenry during the British offensive during the war.
Quick facts about the American flag or the original pennant
It was made in Baltimore, Maryland in July and August 1813 by (Mary Pickersgill) commissioned by Major George Armstead, Commander of Fort McHenry, and had fifteen stars and fifteen ribbons on it.
Mary Pickersgill sewed it from a blend of dyed English wool lace (red, white, and blue stripes) and used white cotton for the (stars).
It had dimensions:
Original Size: 30ft by 42ft
Current size: 30 feet by 34 feet.
It was hoisted over Fort McHenry on the morning of September 14, 1814 to signify the American victory over the British at the Battle of Baltimore, and it was from this scene that Francis Scott Key was inspired to write the American anthem:
(The Star-Spangled Banner).
Kept by the Armistead family as a battle memorial, it was first loaned to the Smithsonian Institution in 1907, then turned into a permanent gift to the American nation in 1912.
The flag was then displayed in a glass case at the Smithsonian’s Arts and Industries Building.
It was on display there for nearly 50 years, with the exception of two during World War II, during which time it was placed in a government warehouse in Virginia to protect it from potential bombing raids on the nation’s capital.
In 1964 the flag was moved to the new National Museum of History and Technology (now the National Museum of American History) where it was displayed in the central hall on the second floor.
Then an attempt was made to preserve the flag in many ways over the years from 1998 until 2006. Then the organizers realized that special conditions must be established for the flag to be kept safely, and they created a new home for it, where the conservationists cooperated with the engineers to develop a long-term plan to preserve the flag. This included creating a state-of-the-art room with a climate-controlled environment and low lighting levels, and displaying the flag in a private corner.
They said that all these factors will help preserve science for future generations.
The modern gallery opened on November 21, 2008.
American flag laws throughout history
first law of science
Adopted on June 14, 1777, the original United States flag had thirteen stars and thirteen stripes.
The second law of science
The Star-Spangled Banner has fifteen stars and fifteen stripes as stipulated in the Second Flag Act approved by Congress on January 13, 1794.
Additional stars and bars represent Vermont and Kentucky, which joined at the time.
The third law of science
On April 4, 1818, Congress decided to keep the alternating lines at 13, which represented the original first colonies, and then add a star representing each state when it joined the Union.
After that, the stars began to increase with the accession of each state to America. Since the independence of the United States of America, the national flag has been reviewed twenty-seven different times, and the reason for this is the joining of states to America and the increase in its number.
For each time a state (or states) was added to the federation, another star was added to the upper left corner of the flag.
The flag reached its final version in 1960 when Hawaii joined the United States of America, the 50th state, which was the last to arrive in 1959.
With this, we see that the development of the flag of the United States of America is not just a history of an American symbol that was built throughout history, but a history that represents the land of this country and its people and what this people went through during the eras of occupation, revolution and union.
Interesting facts about the American flag
1- There were 27 copies of the American flag
We mentioned that the flag has undergone a long history of changes, from 13 stars to 50 today.
2- The current design is not professionally designed
In 1958, a competition was held to choose a design for the American flag, at which time more than 1,500 different designs were submitted, but the winner was the student (Robert Heft) from Lancaster, Ohio, where President Dwight Eisenhower chose the final design.
3- Flags should be disposed of “in a dignified manner”
In the event that you want to destroy the American flag when it has reached an irreparable shape and you need to get rid of it, you can burn it with dignity as they say.
Many municipalities across the country are flag burning on Memorial Day on the Fourth of July where you can participate and burn the flag.
4- Five American flags made it to the moon
You may have seen the famous Neil Armstrong on the moon holding the American flag and putting it there on the moon.
But it is not the only flag that was placed on the surface of the moon. Five additional Apollo missions, namely 12, 14, 15, 16 and 17, ended with astronauts placing an American flag there.
Some myths circulating about the American flag
There is also some misinformation about the American flag that is always circulating, so let’s correct it so that you don’t get confused.
Myth #1: Betsy Ross created the first American flag
Peter Ansoff, president of the North American Flag Association, a group devoted to the study of flags, said the story that President George Washington asked Mrs. Betsy to sew the flag has plenty of contradictions.
It is a story told by Mrs. Betsy Ross’ grandson, William Canby Canby presented his story with little supporting evidence to the Pennsylvania Historical Society in 1870, nearly a century after the original flag was created.
He claimed that his grandmother had told him the story before her death in 1836, when he was about 11 years old.
Mr. Peter cited that George Westton did not spend much time in Philadelphia, where Mrs. Betsy’s shop was.
Additionally, the flag was initially raised as a symbol of the Navy, which has nothing to do with George Washington.
In light of this, we find that it is possible that the true originator of the first American flag has been lost in history and no one knows it!
Myth 2: Wearing flag clothing is illegal
According to the American Legion, wearing clothing made with an actual American flag would be a violation of the code of conduct.
But you will not break the law by wearing the clothes with the flag design, people simply express their patriotism and love for the country by wearing a piece of clothes with the design of the country’s flag and there is nothing illegal in that!
Myth #3: The flag should never be raised at night
Although it is customary to display the American flag from sunrise to sunset, the flag can be displayed 24 hours a day as long as it is lit all night and people can identify it by light, so what?
Myth 4: Only the coffin of a veteran can be wrapped in the American flag
This is not true as any American can request that his coffin be wrapped in the American flag, and there is nothing in the language of the flag law that would prevent anyone else from having a flag covering their coffin.
Myth 5: The flag has always had stars and stripes
The oldest American flags had neither stars nor stripes as previously mentioned since the flag that was used in 1775 had stripes and a symbol of Britain in the upper left corner.
Myth 6: You should destroy the flag when it touches the ground
There is a legend that once a flag touches the ground it must be burned or disposed of.
This information is never accurate!
If the flag is dirty or even touched the ground, it can be simply washed and cleaned and reused!
USA Flag Day
The American flag has a feast as well, as the United States of America celebrates Flag Day on June 14 every year to commemorate the American flag.
President Woodrow Wilson designated this day a national holiday on May 30, 1916.
Flag Day is used by many Americans to celebrate the United States flag as a symbol of preserving the nation’s rich history.
Americans put flags in their homes on this day or draw pictures of the flag, or raise the flag in street rallies, have you ever participated in or were you aware of this holiday?
So this was a historical presentation of the facts behind the story of the American flag, as we saw that it changed its design many times from the time of the British occupation until the accession of the last state of Hawaii to the United States of America in 1959.
Did you know all the interesting facts and stories about the American flag?
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