Thursday, June 14, 2012

Flag Day

Every rainless morning, I post the American flag on an outside wall of my home. Doing so is always a special pleasure, but today -  Flag Day - it takes on unique significance. 

Flag Day commemorates the adoption of the American flag by the Second Continental Congress on June 14, 1777. 

The original U.S. flag featured 13 stripes,  representing the 13 colonies, and 13 white stars in a blue field, signifying a new constellation.

Previously, in 1776, George Washington and members of the "flag committee" called on Betsy Ross at her home in Philadelphia. At the time, Ross was a young widow, known for her sewing skills and engaged in the business of flag making. The committee asked her to make a flag design from a rough drawing showed to her by Washington.

Ross noticed the drawing featured six-pointed stars and informed the committee that a five-pointed star would be correct. With a single clip of her scissors, she displayed a true, symmetrical, five-pointed star, convincing the committee to "do it her way."

After that, the committee left the rough design with Ross but gave her permission to make a sample flag according to her own ideas for the arrangement of the stars and the proportions of the strips.

After the original flag was completed, it was presented to Congress for approval. It was the "flag committee" members who informed Ross that her flag had been accepted as the nation's standard.

In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation that officially established June 14 as Flag Day. In 1949, National Flag Day was established by an Act of Congress.

I did bit of research to find out if there was an official Flag Day event going on in Houston today. Sadly, I didn't find out. Perhaps next year?

Even so, I have no doubt lots of Houstonians will be flying their flags today, and the city will be awash in red, white and blue.

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