Every year on June 14, the United States celebrates Flag Day in commemoration of the adoption of our country’s flag. It was on June 14, 1777 that the Second Continental Congress passed the Flag Resolution, which stated: “Resolved, that the flag of the thirteen United States be thirteen strips, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation.” Today, cities throughout the country hold Flag Day events and activities like ceremonies, festivals and celebrations in honor of the inception of the Stars and Stripes.
A Bit of Flag Day History
American legend says that in 1776, George Washington commissioned Philadelphia seamstress Betsy Ross to create a flag in anticipation for the country’s upcoming declaration of independence. About a year later, John Adams spoke at a meeting of the Continental Congress, passing the Flag Resolution, and our flag was born. The first Flag Day was celebrated on June 14, 1877, a hundred years after the Flag Resolution. Later in the 19th century, patriotic ceremonies were conducted by schoolteachers all over the country as a way to teach children about our history. A teacher named Bernard J. Cigrand, known as the “Father of Flag Day” lobbied Congress for many years to get Flag Day observed officially. In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation stating the June 14 was to be considered National Flag Day, and an Act of Congress in 1949 made it official. Since the first design, there have been over 27 official versions of our flag. As more states entered the Union, more stars were added. The current version dates back to July 4, 1960, when Hawaii became the 50th state.
Celebrating Flag Day in Baltimore
In Baltimore, Flag Day is celebrated in a number of ways. There are plenty of historic and patriotic one-day trips that are just a short drive from Baltimore and below are some of those events. Flag Day Events: Star-Spangled Banner Flag House’s 89th Annual Flag Day Celebration Enjoy free admission to the Historic House and Museum, as well as a flag raising program at noon and guided tours after. The house was built in 1793 and allows you to immerse yourself in the history of the creation of our country’s flag. Flag Day Activities: Flag Day at Fort McHenry For the 239th anniversary of the American Flag, head to historic Fort McHenry for “Find your Park” from 1pm – 2:30pm. This patriotic program will include performances from the Fort McHenry Guard Fifes & Drums as well as the Ceremonial Color Guard.
Flag Day in Washington, D.C.
Our nation’s capital also has some Flag Day activities scheduled that are fun for the entire family. Celebrate Flag Day in Washington, D.C. by heading to the National Museum of American History, one of the most popular Smithsonian museums. You can take in The Star-Spangled Banner: The Flag that Inspired the National Anthem exhibit, which displays the 200 year-old, 30x34 foot flag that inspired Francis Scott Key to write our national anthem in a special environmentally-controlled chamber. The exhibit also features interactive features and stories of the history of the flag.
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