Here are some US flag trivia you can share with your family and friends this coming Fourth of July!
- Though the colors of the US flag are often described as red, white and blue, they are not the flag’s official colors. According to the Color Association of the US, the American flag’s official colors are white, a symbolism of purity and innocence, Old Glory Red, a symbolism of hardiness and valor, and Old Glory Blue, a symbolism of vigilance, justice, and perseverance.
- The US flag had 27 official versions. The first one was made in 1777 where the flag was designed with 13 stripes and 13 stars to represent the country’s 13 original colonies. The flag added two stars when Kentucky and Vermont became part of the union. Thus, from 1795 to 1818, the flag had 15 stripes and 15 stars. This was the version where Francis Scott Key got inspiration to compose the US anthem, The Star-Spangled Banner. Lawmakers anticipated a crowded field of stripes as more and more state joined the union. As such, after 1818, they decided to just leave the stripes at 13 and then add a star to give honor to each new state.
- Robert G. Heft created the 50-star pattern. President Eisenhower received hundreds of ideas to update the flag when Alaska and Hawaii became official states. The majority of the ideas center on a 50-star flag. Heft, then a 17-year-old student at Lancaster High in Ohio, designed a 50-star pattern for his class project. His design was one of the three versions that was accepted. To this day, Heft’s B-project remains in use.
- The US flag has a lot of nicknames. It’s often called The Stars and Stripes, The Red, White and Blue, and The Star-Spangled Banner. It’s sometimes referred to the “Old Glory” as well which relates to a flag owned by Captain William Driver. The said flag is now on display at the Smithsonian Institution.
- Although Betsy Ross is credited to be the designer of the very first American flag, there is barely evidence to support such a statement. In 1870, her grandson provided the only documentations of Ross' contribution to the making of the first US flag. He brought affidavits of evidence from his own family members at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. But, many historians believe that it was actually Francis Hopkinson who designed the flag as it was explicitly documented in the journals of the Continental Congress.
Celebrate Flag Day with these stunning photos of the flag of America!