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On June 14th, 1777, after more than two years of war with Great Britain, and nearly a year after declaring independence, the Congress of the United States passed the Flag Resolution. It states:
[T]he flag of the thirteen United States (shall) be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation.
From that day henceforth, the flag of the United States has been a standard of the ideals and aspirations of the nation then fighting to be born, and of its subsequent growth to this day.
Traditionally, red symbolizes hardiness, valor, and the blood of those who gave their lives for the country. White signifies purity and innocence. Blue represents vigilance, perseverance, and justice.
The Stars and Stripes was first officially flown on August 3, 1777, at the Battle of Fort Stanwix – the American Soldiers literally tore strips of cloth from their uniforms and red flannel undergarments to hand-sew the new flag. The British defeat at the siege and the subsequent American victory at the Battles of Saratoga are proud validation of the bravery and courage of the men and women who are our Patriot Ancestors.
Although a historical coincidence, June 14 is also the Birthday of the United States Army. I find it especially significant that the first official raising of the National Colors was by the Soldiers likewise authorized by that same Congress some two years previously.
I encourage all to make today (if you haven’t already done so) to say the Pledge of Allegiance. While doing so, take the opportunity to look afresh at the “Star-Spangled Banner” and appreciate what it has meant in the past, what it means today, and what it symbolizes for the future.Published in