The American flag with fifty stars will have its fiftieth birthday on July 4, 2010, just a few weeks after National Flag Day. Nicknamed Old Glory or the Stars and Stripes, the flag is considered a living symbol by many in the nation with guidelines for proper display.
Many flags have flown over the geographical area that is the United States of America since explorers and settlers began making their way here in the 16th Century. The most famous are represented in this amazing coin set:
- The Grand Union Flag, often alternately called: THE CONGRESS COLORS or THE FIRST NAVY ENSIGN or THE CAMBRIDGE FLAG was authorized by the Second Continental Congress in 1775. Thirteen alternating red and white stripes comprised the body of the flag to symbolize the uniqueness and unity of the 13 American colonies. The field of blue in the upper corner of the flag included the British Union Jack, consisting of the cross of St. George of England and the cross of St. Andrew of Scotland.
- The post-revolution flag of the newly independent nation is known as the Betsy Ross Flag after the popular (but now proven erroneous) belief that seamstress Betsy Ross had made the first flag and presented it to George Washington. The canton features a circle of 13 stars, representing the 13 original states. The "Betsy Ross Flag", however, did not appear until the early 1790s, and there is no solid evidence to support claims that Betsy Ross created the first stars and stripes.
- The US flag was modified each time states were admitted to the union. The 4th, July 1960 the New Flag of the United States of America containing a Union of 50 stars flew for the first time at 12:01 A.M. when it was raised at the Fort McHenry National Monument in Baltimore, Maryland where almost 150 years before Francis Scott Key was inspired to write the Star Spangled Banner.
"We take the stars from Heaven, the red from out mother country, separating it by white stripes, thus showing that we have separated from her, and the white stripes shall go down to posterity representing liberty." George Washington