American Flag Facts

American Flag Facts
The original 13 star version of the American flag was adopted on June 14th, 1777. The version of the American flag with 50 stars was adopted on July 4th, 1960. The 13 horizontal stripes that alternate between red and white are symbolic of the 13 British colonies that declared their independence from Great Britain. The 50 stars are symbolic of the 50 U.S. states. Since it was first designed in 1777 the design has changed 26 times, with 27 official versions. President Eisenhower ordered the 50-star design on August 21st, 1959. In honor of the first flag being hoisted by the Continental Army in June 1777, Flag Day is observed on June 14th each year.
Interesting American Flag Facts:
'Three strings of wampum' were promised to Congress to speed up the design and creation of the flag. Thomas Green, An American Indian made this promise so that he would have a flag while traveling through dangerous territory.
The number of stripes once reached 15 and then it was decided to revert to 13. The number increased because more states had joined the union. It was decided that the stars would increase in number as more states joined and the stripes would remain at 13.
The star design has changed throughout history when new states were added, but the 50-star pattern that remains today was designed by a high school student. He was 17 and his name was Robert Heft from Ohio. The design was a school project and he only received a B- for his work. However after his design was chosen she changed his grade to an A.
The flag in use today is the only one to have stayed as the official version for 50 years or more.
A 15-star flag that flew at Ft. McHenry in 1812 during the War of 1812 is on display at the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History. It is one of the few remaining 15-star versions in existence today.
The American Flag is also known as 'Stars and Stripes', 'Red, White and Blue', 'Old Glory' and 'The Star Spangled Banner'.
Some believe that Betsy Ross was responsible for making the very first American Flag. While some scholars debate this, it is known that she sewed many flags during her lifetime.
The blue in the flag is meant to symbolize the color of heaven, reverence to God, loyalty, sincerity, justice and truth.
The white in the flag is meant to symbolize hope purity, cleanliness of life and rectitude of conduct.
The red in the flag is meant to symbolize valor, zeal and fervency.
The first 13 colonies represented by the 13 stripes include Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina and Virginia.
The specifications of the flag's size and dimensions are contained in an executive order that is only meant to govern the flags made by or for the federal U.S. government.
When the flag is used for display in parades or other ceremonies it is sometimes decorated with gold fringe. This is acceptable provided that the fringe does not deface the design.

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