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Flag Day

Each year on June 14, The United States of America celebrate the birthday of the Stars and Stripes, which came into being on June 14, 1777. At that time, the Second Continental Congress authorized a new flag to symbolize the new Nation, the United States of America.

The Stars and Stripes first flew in a Flag Day celebration in Hartford, Connecticut in 1861, during the first summer of the Civil War. The first national observance of Flag Day occurred June 14, 1877, the centennial of the original flag resolution.

By the mid 1890's the observance of Flag Day on June 14 was a popular event. Mayors and governors began to issue proclamations in their jurisdictions to celebrate this event.

In 1916 President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation calling for a nationwide observance of Flag Day on June 14. It was not until 1949 that Congress made this day a permanent observance by resolving "That the 14th day of June of each year is hereby designated as Flag Day . The measure was signed into law by President Harry Truman.

Although Flag Day is not celebrated as a Federal holiday, Americans everywhere continue to honor the history and heritage it represents.


Presentation of the flag during a ceremony should be preceded by a brief talk emphasizing the importance of the occasion. Following the presentation all present should salute the flag, recite the pledge of allegiance, and sing the national anthem.


1. Two persons, facing each other, hold the flag waist high and horizontally between them.
2. The lower striped section is folded, lengthwise, over the blue field. Hold bottom to top and edges together securely.
3. Fold the flag again, lengthwise, folded edge to open edge.
4. A triangular fold is started along the length of the flag, from the end to the heading by bringing the striped corner of the folded edge to meet the open edge.
5. The outer point is turned inward parallel with the open edge, forming a second triangle.
6. Repeat the triangular folding until the entire length of the flag is folded.
7. When the flag is completely folded only the triangular blue field should be visible.


The life of your flag depends on your care. Dirt can cut fabrics, dull colors, and cause wear. Most outdoor flags can be washed in mild detergent and thoroughly rinsed. Indoor and parade flags should be dry-cleaned. Many dry cleaners offer free cleaning of U.S. flags during the months of June and July. Damaged flags can be repaired and utilized as long as the overall dimensions are not noticeably altered. American Legion Posts and local governments often have facilities to dispose of unserviceable flags. Store your flags in a well ventilated area away from any harsh chemicals or cleaning compounds. If your flag gets wet, never store it until it is completely dry. Wet folds cause permanent creases. Dampness ruins fabric and causes mildew. Pole care is also related to flag care. Rust and scale cause permanent stains and some metallic oxides actually eat holes in fabric.

Federal Citizens Information Center

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