Flag Day – When is it – What is it – and where did it come from?

Flag Day is observed by Presidential Proclamation on June 14 th of each year. American however, knows that the Fourth of July is the countries birthday. Then one might ask why “Flag Day” is in June? The American flag was adopted by the Second Continental Congress in the First Flag Resolution of June 14, 1777. The resolution read:

“Resolved, that the flag of the United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue representing a new constellation.”

Although there are several historic accounts of who thought of Flag Day and how it became an annual celebration, BJ is generally recognized as being the first to establish an event to honor the US Flag. In 1885, Cigrand, a schoolteacher in Fredonia Wisconsin, arranged for his pupils to observe June 14 as “Flag Birthday”. For many years he continued to be an advocate of June 14 as “Flag Birthday” or “Flag Day “. On June 14th, 2004, the 108th U.S. Congress voted unanimously on H.R. 662 that Flag Day originated in Ozaukee County, Wisconsin.

Over a 10 year period after Cigrand began his tradition, schools, organizations, and local governments in many areas began to recognize and celebrate June 14, as Flag Day. In 1894, the governor of New York directed that the Flag be displayed on all public buildings on June 14 th . During the same year, the “American Flag Day Association” was organized in Illinois to promote the holding of Flag Day exercises. On June 14, 1894, due to the work of the Association, 300,000 children in several Illinois cities participated in the first general public school celebration of Flag Day.

After three decades of state and local celebrations, President Woodrow Wilson, on May 30 th , 1916, established by Proclamation, Flag Day – the anniversary of the Flag Resolution of 1777. For many years, Flag Day was celebrated in various communities, but it wasn’t until August 3rd, 1949, that President Truman signed an Act of Congress designating June 14th of each year as National Flag Day.

According to the Congressional Act of 1949, the week of June 14 is designated as “National Flag Week.” During National Flag Week, the president will issue a proclamation urging U.S. citizens to fly the American flag for the duration of that week. The flag should also be displayed on all Government buildings. Some organizations hold parades and events in celebration of our national flag and everything it represents. It’s also a time to remember and honor military men and women who defend our flag and our country.

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