June 14 is National Flag Day in America, a day set aside for us to honor and celebrate independence and liberty in the USA. Here is how the day came into being:
- June 14, 1777: The Continental Congress replaced the British Union flag with the American flag – designed with 13 white stars and 13 red and white stripes to symbolize the 13 colonies that became the first states. To this day, our flag still has 13 red stripes to represent these original states. Legend has it that a seamstress from Philadelphia, Betsy Ross, made the original American flag. Ross was the official flag maker of the Pennsylvania Navy.
- June 1885: In his newspaper article "The Fourteenth of June," a man named Bernard Cigrand urged the nation to hold an annual observance to honor the birth of the American flag. He is known as the "father of Flag Day."
- May 30, 1916: President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation establishing annual, nationwide observance of Flag Day on June 14.
- August 1949: Flag Day becomes official when President Harry Truman signed legislation proclaiming June 14 as National Flag Day.
- 1966: The US Congress requested an annual Presidential proclamation designating the week in which June 14 falls as National Flag Week.
People celebrate Flag Day by displaying Old Glory from their homes and businesses. Brush up on your flag flying etiquette before displaying your flag. Various towns and cities across the US hold Flag Day parades and other ways to commemorate the founding of our nation and the birth of the flag. Check your local news and event calendars for celebrations in your area.