On April 4, , a plan was passed by Congress at the suggestion of U. Naval Captain Samuel C. Reid  in which the flag was changed to have 20 stars, with a new star to be added when each new state was admitted, but the number of stripes would be reduced to 13 so as to honor the original colonies.go here
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The act specified that new flag designs should become official on the first July 4 Independence Day following admission of one or more new states. The most recent change, from 49 stars to 50, occurred in when the present design was chosen, after Hawaii gained statehood in August Before that, the admission of Alaska in January prompted the debut of a short-lived star flag.
Prior to the adoption of the star flag in , there was no official arrangement of the stars in the canton, although the U. Navy used standardized designs. Throughout the 19th century there was an abundance of different star patterns, rectangular and circular. On July 4, , the star flag became the version of the flag in longest use, surpassing the star flag that was used from to When the thirteen stripes and stars first appeared at Canton, much curiosity was excited among the people.
News was circulated that a strange ship had arrived from the further end of the world, bearing a flag "as beautiful as a flower". In the above quote, the Chinese words are written phonetically based on spoken Cantonese. The names given were common usage in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
Chinese now refer to the United States as simplified Chinese: However, the "flower flag" terminology persists in some places today: In the following table depicting the 28 various designs of the United States flag, the star patterns for the flags are merely the usual patterns, often associated with the United States Navy. Canton designs, prior to the proclamation of the star flag, had no official arrangement of the stars.
Furthermore, the exact colors of the flag were not standardized until In the November U. However, the legitimacy of the result of this election was disputed. If a new U. The flag of the United States is one of the nation's most widely recognized symbols. Within the United States, flags are frequently displayed not only on public buildings but on private residences.
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The flag is a common motif on decals for car windows, and on clothing ornamentation such as badges and lapel pins. Throughout the world the flag has been used in public discourse to refer to the United States. The flag has become a powerful symbol of Americanism , and is flown on many occasions, with giant outdoor flags used by retail outlets to draw customers.
Reverence for the flag has at times reached religion-like fervor: Despite a number of attempts to ban the practice, desecration of the flag remains protected as free speech. Scholars have noted the irony that "[t]he flag is so revered because it represents the land of the free, and that freedom includes the ability to use or abuse that flag in protest". This nationalist attitude around the flag is a shift from earlier sentiments; the US flag was largely a "military ensign or a convenient marking of American territory" that rarely appeared outside of forts, embassies, and the like until the opening of the American Civil War in April , when Major Robert Anderson was forced to surrender Fort Sumter in Charleston Harbor to Confederates.
Anderson was celebrated in the North as a hero  and U. For the first time American flags were mass-produced rather than individually stitched and even so, manufacturers could not keep up with demand. As the long winter of turned into spring, that old flag meant something new. The abstraction of the Union cause was transfigured into a physical thing: The basic design of the current flag is specified by 4 U. The specification gives the following values:. These specifications are contained in an executive order which, strictly speaking, governs only flags made for or by the U. Even flags flown over the U.
Capitol for sale to the public through Representatives or Senators are provided in these sizes. The exact red, white, and blue colors to be used in the flag are specified with reference to the CAUS Standard Color Reference of America , 10th edition. The "relative" coordinates in the following table were found by scaling the luminous reflectance relative to the flag's "white". As with the design, the official colors are only officially required for flags produced for the U. The practice of using more saturated colors than the official cloth is not new.
As Taylor, Knoche, and Granville wrote in One set was given on the website of the U. Government Printing Office preferred a different set. A third red was suggested by a California Military Department document in When Alaska and Hawaii were being considered for statehood in the s, more than 1, designs were submitted to President Dwight D. Although some of them were star versions, the vast majority were star proposals. At least three of these designs were identical to the present design of the star flag. Of these proposals, one created by year-old Robert G.
Heft in as a school project received the most publicity. His mother was a seamstress, but refused to do any of the work for him. He originally received a B— for the project. After discussing the grade with his teacher, it was agreed somewhat jokingly that if the flag was accepted by Congress, the grade would be reconsidered. Heft's flag design was chosen and adopted by presidential proclamation after Alaska and before Hawaii was admitted into the Union in Traditionally, the flag may be decorated with golden fringe surrounding the perimeter of the flag as long as it does not deface the flag proper.
Ceremonial displays of the flag, such as those in parades or on indoor posts, often use fringe to enhance the appearance of the flag. The first recorded use of fringe on a flag dates from , and the Army used it officially in No specific law governs the legality of fringe, but a opinion of the attorney general addresses the use of fringe and the number of stars " However, according to the Army Institute of Heraldry, which has official custody of the flag designs and makes any change ordered, there are no implications of symbolism in the use of fringe.
Drew , a Colorado Court of Appeals judgment that was released in May The flag is customarily flown year-round at most public buildings, and it is not unusual to find private houses flying full-size 3 by 5 feet 0. On Memorial Day it is common to place small flags by war memorials and next to the graves of U. Also on Memorial Day it is common to fly the flag at half staff, until noon, in remembrance of those who lost their lives fighting in U. The United States Flag Code outlines certain guidelines for the use, display, and disposal of the flag.
For example, the flag should never be dipped to any person or thing, unless it is the ensign responding to a salute from a ship of a foreign nation. Team captain Martin Sheridan is famously quoted as saying "this flag dips to no earthly king", though the true provenance of this quotation is unclear. The flag should never be allowed to touch the ground and, if flown at night, must be illuminated. If the edges become tattered through wear, the flag should be repaired or replaced. When a flag is so tattered that it can no longer serve as a symbol of the United States, it should be destroyed in a dignified manner, preferably by burning.
The American Legion and other organizations regularly conduct flag retirement ceremonies, often on Flag Day, June The Boy Scouts of America recommends that modern nylon or polyester flags be recycled instead of burned, due to hazardous gases being produced when such materials are burned. The Flag Code prohibits using the flag "for any advertising purpose" and also states that the flag "should not be embroidered, printed, or otherwise impressed on such articles as cushions, handkerchiefs, napkins, boxes, or anything intended to be discarded after temporary use".
Section 8, entitled Respect For Flag states in part: Section 3 of the Flag Code  defines "the flag" as anything "by which the average person seeing the same without deliberation may believe the same to represent the flag of the United States of America".
An additional part of Section 8 Respect For Flag , that is frequently violated at sporting events is part c "The flag should never be carried flat or horizontally, but always aloft and free. Although the Flag Code is U. When the flag is affixed to the right side of a vehicle of any kind e. The flag has been displayed on every U. But since Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo were launched and landed vertically and were not capable of horizontal atmospheric flight as the Space Shuttle did on its landing approach, the "streaming" convention was not followed and these flags were oriented with the stripes running horizontally, perpendicular to the direction of flight.
This rule dates back to the Army's early history, when both mounted cavalry and infantry units would designate a standard bearer, who carried the Colors into battle. As he charged, his forward motion caused the flag to stream back. Since the Stars and Stripes are mounted with the canton closest to the pole, that section stayed to the right, while the stripes flew to the left.
Other organizations that wear flag patches on their uniforms can have the flag facing in either direction. In this case, the canton was on the left. The flag did not appear on U. The star flag first appeared on the General Casimir Pulaski issue of , though in a small monochrome depiction. Appleton donated the flag with the wish that it would always be on view to the public. In , the National Museum of American History determined that the Star Spangled Banner Flag required further conservation treatment to remain on public display. In teams of museum conservators, curators, and other specialists helped move the flag from its home in the Museum's Flag Hall into a new conservation laboratory.
The Flag That Inspired the National Anthem," where it rests at a 10 degree angle in dim light for conservation purposes. By presidential proclamation, acts of Congress, and custom, U. The flag should especially be displayed at full staff on the following days: The flag is displayed at half-staff half-mast in naval usage as a sign of respect or mourning.
Nationwide, this action is proclaimed by the president; statewide or territory-wide, the proclamation is made by the governor. In addition, there is no prohibition against municipal governments, private businesses or citizens flying the flag at half-staff as a local sign of respect and mourning. However, many flag enthusiasts feel this type of practice has somewhat diminished the meaning of the original intent of lowering the flag to honor those who held high positions in federal or state offices. Eisenhower issued the first proclamation on March 1, , standardizing the dates and time periods for flying the flag at half-staff from all federal buildings, grounds, and naval vessels; other congressional resolutions and presidential proclamations ensued.
However, they are only guidelines to all other entities: To properly fly the flag at half-staff, one should first briefly hoist it top of the staff, then lower it to the half-staff position, halfway between the top and bottom of the staff. Similarly, when the flag is to be lowered from half-staff, it should be first briefly hoisted to the top of the staff.
National Korean War Veterans Armistice Day, on July 27, was formerly a day of half-staff observance until the law expired in In , it became a day of full-staff observance. Though not part of the official Flag Code, according to military custom, flags should be folded into a triangular shape when not in use.
To properly fold the flag:. There is also no specific meaning for each fold of the flag. However, there are scripts read by non-government organizations and also by the Air Force that are used during the flag folding ceremony. These scripts range from historical timelines of the flag to religious themes.
Traditionally, the flag of the United States plays a role in military funerals ,  and occasionally in funerals of other civil servants such as law enforcement officers, fire fighters, and U. A burial flag is draped over the deceased's casket as a pall during services.
Just prior to the casket being lowered into the ground, the flag is ceremonially folded and presented to the deceased's next of kin as a token of respect. Flag of El Salvador — From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. For other uses, see American Flag disambiguation. June 14, original star version July 4, current star version. Timeline of the flag of the United States. United States Flag Code. This section possibly contains original research. Please improve it by verifying the claims made and adding inline citations.
Statements consisting only of original research should be removed. October Learn how and when to remove this template message. Flag of Bikini Atoll. S Government Printing Office. Retrieved April 5, Retrieved December 13, In order to gain a more personal perspective on the film, Spielberg traveled to Poland before principal photography began to interview Holocaust survivors and visit the real-life locations that he planned to portray in the movie. The production was also allowed to shoot scenes outside the gates of Auschwitz.
A symbol of innocence in the movie, the little girl in the red coat who appears during the liquidation of the ghetto in the movie was based on a real person. In the film, the little girl is played by actress Oliwia Dabrowska, who—at the age of three—promised Spielberg that she would not watch the film until she was 18 years old. She allegedly watched the movie when she was 11, breaking her promise, and spent years rejecting the experience. I had to grow up to watch the film.
The actual girl in the red coat was named Roma Ligocka; a survivor of the Krakow ghetto, she was known amongst the Jews living there by her red winter coat. Ligocka, now a painter who lives in Germany, later wrote a biography about surviving the Holocaust called The Girl in the Red Coat. For a better sense of reality, Spielberg originally wanted to shoot the movie completely in Polish and German using subtitles, but he eventually decided against it because he felt that it would take away from the urgency and importance of the images onscreen.
It would have been an excuse to take their eyes off the screen and watch something else. Everyone else lobbied against the idea, saying that it would stylize the Holocaust. Spielberg and Kaminski chose to shoot the film in a grimy, unstylish fashion and format inspired by German Expressionist and Italian Neorealist films.
Neeson and Ralph Fiennes were both nominated for their performances, and the film also received nods for Costume Design, Makeup, and Sound. The director re-enrolled in secret, and gained his remaining credits by writing essays and submitting projects under a pseudonym. In honor of the film's 25th anniversary, it's currently back in theaters. But Spielberg believes that the film may be even more important for today's audiences to see.
Citing the spike in hate crimes targeting religious minorities since , he said, "Hate's less parenthetical today, it's more a headline. December 15 is Bill of Rights Day, so let's celebrate by exploring the amendments that helped shape America. Some of the sentiments in our bill of rights are at least years old. In , King John of England had a serious uprising on his hands. For many years, discontentment festered among his barons, many of whom loathed the King and his sky-high taxes.
Their talks produced one of the most significant legal documents ever written.
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The King and his barons composed a clause agreement which would—ostensibly—impose certain limits on royal rule. Among these laws, the best-known gave English noblemen the right to a fair trial. The original version didn't last long, though. Today, citizens of the U. Magna Carta's influence has also extended far beyond Britain. Across the Atlantic, its language flows through the U. Over half of the articles in America's Bill of Rights are directly or indirectly descended from clauses in said charter.
For instance, the Fifth Amendment guarantees that "private property shall not be taken for public use, without just compensation.
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Issued in , this Parliamentary Act made several guarantees that were later echoed by the first 10 U. There's a decent chance that you've never heard of George Mason. By founding father standards, this Virginian has been largely overlooked. But if it weren't for Mason, the Constitution might have never been given its venerated Bill of Rights. Back in , Mason was part of a committee that drafted Virginia's Declaration of Rights.
As everybody knows, Thomas Jefferson would write another, more famous declaration that year. When he did so, he was heavily influenced by the document Mason spearheaded. With the Constitutional Convention wrapping up in Philadelphia, Mason argued that a bill of inalienable rights should be added. This idea was flatly rejected by the State Delegates.
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So, in protest, Mason refused to sign the completed Constitution. At the convention, the motion to include a bill of rights wasn't made by Mason, although he seconded it. Instead, credit belongs to one Elbridge Gerry , who had also withheld his signature from the Constitution. He'd go on to become a notorious figure during his tenure as the governor of Massachusetts.
A staunch Democratic-Republican, Gerry was governor during the blatantly partisan re-drawing of the Bay State's congressional districts. These days, we call this unfair political maneuver "gerrymandering. The Sage of Monticello sided with Mason. Following the Constitution's approval, Jefferson offered a few comments to his friend James Madison whom history has called its father. Adams was away in Great Britain when the Constitution was being created.
Upon reading its contents, he proclaimed that "A Declaration of Rights I Wish to see with all my heart, though I am sensible of the Difficulty in framing one, in which all the States can agree. From the onset, this future president admired the principle behind a bill of rights. Still, he initially saw no point in creating one. Madison explained his position to Jefferson in October , writing, "My own opinion has always been in favor of a bill of rights … At the same time, I have never thought [its] omission a material defect. After becoming a congressman in , he formally introduced the amendments that would comprise the current bill of rights.
Madison won his seat in the U. House of Representatives after running against the man who would become his Oval Office successor. Both candidates acted with civility: While on the campaign trail , they regularly dined together and even shared sleeping quarters. Originally, Representative Madison presented 19 amendments. On August 24, , the House green-lit 17 of them. That September, the Senate made some heavy edits, trimming these down to an even dozen, which the states then looked over.
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In the end, numbers three through 12 were approved and collectively became our Bill of Rights on December 15, Better late than never. The second proposed amendment would have restricted Congress' ability to give itself a pay raise or cut. No law that tweaked the salaries of its members would take effect until after the next Congress had begun. Sensible as this idea sounds, the amendment wasn't ratified by the required three-fourths majority of U. So, for years, it was stuck in limbo. His rollercoaster-like journey with the dormant proposal began in Then a student at the University of Texas, Watson was researching a term paper when he discovered this Congressional Pay Amendment.
So Watson mounted an aggressive letter-writing campaign. Thanks to his urging, state after state finally ratified the amendment until, at last, over 38 had done so. After a bit of legal wrangling with Congress, on May 20, , the constitution was updated to include it as the 27th and most recent amendment. Watson, by the way, got a C on that term paper.
During his first term, President Washington and Congress had 14 official handwritten replicas of the Bill of Rights made. At present, two are conspicuously unaccounted for. One copy was retained by the federal government while the rest were sent off to the 11 states as well as Rhode Island and North Carolina, which had yet to ratify.
In , a long-lost original copy—experts aren't sure which—was gifted to the Library of Congress.