Today is the day that we celebrate the American Flag, June 14, 1777 is when the Second Continental Congress adopted the American Flag. The flag called for 13 stripes, alternating red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation. The idea of patriotic celebrations honoring the flag spread throughout the country until it was officially established by proclamation by President Woodrow Wilson on May 30, 1916. It wasn’t until Aug. 3, 1949, however, that President Harry Truman signed an Act of Congress designating June 14 of each year as National Flag Day.
Here are the rules on displaying the American Flag:
- The flag is usually displayed from sunrise to sunset. It should be raised briskly and lowered ceremoniously. The flag should not be flown in inclement weather and should only be flown at night if it is illuminated.
- The flag should be displayed daily and on all holidays, weather permitting, on or near the main administration buildings of all public institutions, including schools and polling places on election days.
- When displayed flat against a wall or a window, or in a vertical orientation, the “union” field of stars should be uppermost and to the left of the observer.
- In a group of flags displayed from staffs, the U.S. flag should be at the center and the highest point.
- When flags of states, cities or other organizations are flow on the same staff, the U.S. flag must be at the top.
- When the flag is raised or lowered as part of a ceremony, and as it passes by in parade or review, everyone, except those in uniform, should face the flag with the right hand over the heart.
- The U.S. flag should never be dipped toward any person or object, nor should the flag ever touch anything beneath it.
- The flag should never be draped or drawn back in folds. Draped red, white and blue bunting should be used for decoration, with the blue at the top and red at the bottom.
- When the flag is worn out or otherwise no longer a fitting emblem for display, it should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.