June 14, 2011

"What Is Flag Day?" and Other Flag-Related Facts

Did you know today is Flag Day in the USA? Well, it is.

I've always known that Flag Day rolled around every June 14, but that's probably because I'm from Pennsylvania, which is the only state to celebrate it has a state holiday. But if you're unfamiliar with this yearly nod to the Stars and Stripes here's your handy cheat sheet.

Flag Day commemorates the adoption of the Unite States flag, which happened on June 14, 1777 by resolution of the Second Continental Congress, but it wasn't until 1916 when President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation that officially established June 14 as Flag Day. And in 1949, National Flag Day was established by an Act of Congress. Now you know!

The US flag has been through countless redesigns before arriving at the flag we see today. I mean, imagine having to think of new ways to keep adding stars for each new state in the Union? The Betsy Rosses of the past had to get crafty. While all of the US flags have had some version of the stars and stripes (see a historical timeline with images here) some variations were definitely more creative than others, like:

The Great Star Flag -- July 4, 1818 to July 3, 1819

The Fort Sumter Flag -- July 4, 1859 to July 3, 1861

The Concentric Circle Flag -- July 4, 1877 to July 3, 1890

Fun, right? Now, I've done some scouring for other fun flag-related content and I'll be honest; it's slim pickin's. I did happen to find a few interesting items, though!

There was this fun rundown of world flags created with the food representing each country. Plus, folks of my generation will remember Yakko of Animaniacs fame singing all of the countries of the world, so check out his song with the flags flashing by!

And for no real good reason enjoy the cast of Saturday Night Live in their Digital Short called "Flags of the World."

Happy Flag Day!