History Of The American Flag Explained
It was on January 1, 1776, that the Continental Army was restructured and adjusted according to a Congressional resolution which heralded American forces to the command of George Washington. On that day, the American Continental Army was blockading Boston which had been taken over by the British army. It has been said that the first American flag was made in May of 1776 by Betsy Ross, a Philadelphia seamstress who was actually a friend of George Washington and acquainted with other prominent and high-ranking Philadelphians.
Ross suggested that the five-pointed star be used instead of the star with six points. This is because the five-pointed star can be cut off easily with a few trims of the scissors. It is also said that Betsy Ross was the one who made the flags for the Pennsylvanian navy. However, the first unofficial flag of America was called the Grand Union Flag, also known as the Continental Colors. It was raised at the order and command of General Washington close to his headquarters outside Boston January 1, 1776. This first unofficial flag was composed of thirteen alternating white and red horizontal stripes, with the British Union Flag in the canton. However, the first official American flag was accepted by the Continental Congress on June 14, 1777. This flag was also known as the Stars and Stripes for it consisted of 13 stars which represented the first 13 colonies. However, there is no assurance of who actually designed and made this flag. It is said that it was Francis Hopkinson, a Continental Congress member, designed the flag.
However, between 1777 and 1960, Congress implemented procedures that varied its shape, design, and structure of the flag. And it was decided that there was a need for additional starts to represent all the states of America. It was on January 3, 1959, that President Eisenhower issued an executive order which states that the arrangement of the stars should be in six horizontal rows of eight, every single point of every star directed upward. In 1791 and 1792, after Kentucky and Vermont were added to the Union, two stars and two stripes were added during 1795.
This brought inspiration to lawyer Francis Scott Key to write and compose a poem that later became the U.S. National Anthem. It was in 1818 that five more states had been added and declared and Congress decided to pass legislation that fixes the number of stars and stripes.
The stars would have equal numbers as the states. On July 4, 1960, the last new star was added after Hawaii became a state, which gives a total number of fifty stars. The American Flag has been the emblem of the nation's power and harmony for more than 200 years. It serves as the binding material that brings millions of citizens together in attaining one goal.