Happy Flag Day: A Gallery of Patriotic Flags, and Guns
By Chris Eger
First designated in 1916, while the country was on the eve of World War I, Flag Day is June 14 and celebrates the good old Red, White, and Blue.
Less than a year after the country declared independence from King George III, the Continental Congress resolved the basics of the American flag on June 14, 1777, that it be of “thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the Union be thirteen stars, white on a blue field, representing a new constellation,” and it was soon carried into battle at Brandywine just three months later. Recognized at sea on Continental Navy vessels the next year by foreign governments, there has been no turning back.
President Woodrow Wilson issued a presidential proclamation establishing the first national Flag Day in 1916 and, in 1949, President Harry S. Truman– who served in WWI– signed the Congressionally-approved national observance into law.
The 15-star/15-stripe flag was one of the country’s first, flown from 1795 through 1818. Americans fought under it in the Barbary Wars and the War of 1812 where it was immortalized by poet Francis Scott Key during the bombardment of Fort McHenry, as The Star-Spangled Banner. There have been over 27 versions of the U.S. flag, with