Celebrating Flag Day

June 14 is Flag Day, and we have all the details about the history and how to properly display the flag

By Courtney Verrill

The flag is saluted during the opening ceremony of the 2016 National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic in Snowmass Village, Colo. (Photo by Christoper DiVirgilio)

For over a century, the United States (U.S.) has celebrated the flag with a special day. On June 14, 1777, the Stars and Stripes became a national symbol for the U.S. and the flag was born. In 1885, the idea of celebrating the flag’s birthday started when a Wisconsin school teacher, Bernard Cigrand, had his students write essays on what the flag meant to them. He called June 14 the flag’s birthday. Throughout his life, Cigrand continued to publicize his concept for the birthday and was an advocate for how to respect the flag. Some states and towns adopted the annual celebration, but it wasn’t until Aug. 3, 1949 that June 14 was designated as National Flag Day by an Act of Congress. Today, Flag Day is celebrated with parades, ceremonies and large displays of the flag.

Properly displaying the flag is very important. There are many rules to follow. Here’s how to properly display the flag:


A flag is displayed during the opening ceremony of the 2016 National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic in Snowmass Village, Colo. (Photo by Christopher DiVirgilio)
  • Make sure it’s free of any barriers, such as trees and wires, so it is seen clearly.
  • The American Flag is placed at the top of the flag pole, especially when there is a second flag displayed underneath it.
  • If you want to display your flag outside of a window looking down, the union should be at the top left.
  • The flag must be raised every morning and taken down every night, around sunrise and sunset, unless it is illuminated. If it is not lit up, never fly your flag at night.
  • Don’t fly your flag during inclement weather, unless it is an all-weather flag.
  • The American Flag is always the first flag raised and last to be lowered.
  • When a number of flags are grouped for display, the American Flag is always to be in the center and at the highest point of the group.

Celebrating the birth of the nation’s flag has been a tradition for many years. Flag Day is a way to keep up with the US traditions, history, pride and respect.

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