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Posts Tagged ‘Flag Day

“Thou hast set all the borders of the earth…” but then humans marked them…

Fifty states, fifty welcome signs.

(“Thou hast set all the borders of the earth…”  Psalms 74:17)

As we gas up and hit the road to collect ’em all, we might recall that it was on this date in 1777 that the Marine Committee of the Second Continental Congress passed the Flag Resolution– and the Stars and Stripes was adopted as the flag of the United States of America for maritime purposes.  While Congress reserved the right to adopt a different design for the nation’s ensign, it never did; rather it just added stars to the original thirteen for each new state in the Union.

The resolution specified “that the flag of the United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new Constellation”– but it did not specify the layout of the stars.  Consequently there were several early versions, for instance:

The “Betsy Ross” flag

The Bennington flag

In 1795, the number of stars and stripes was increased to 15 (reflecting the entry of Kentucky and Vermont).  It was about this flag the Francis Scott Key wrote “The Star-Spangled Banner”– and the dye was cast.

The “Anthem” flag

Happy Flag Day!

Celebrate!…

source

There’s something of a gulf, here on the heels of St. Patrick’s Day, until the next mainstream holiday…  and even then, it revolves around candy and eggs.  Thankfully, the folks at Chase’s Calendar of Events— since 1957, the go-to source for special days of any specific gravity– have a list to which one can resort…  For instance, Chase’s observes, today is:

Flag Day (in Aruba)

National Biodiesel Day

Absolutely Incredible Kid Day

Awkward Moments Day

Companies That Care Day

There’s bound to be something in there that calls for a celebratory drink.

Or one can take the longer view, and honor what’s special about the Month.  (For instance, March is, among many other distinctions, National Frozen Food Month– now that’s the stuff that parties are made of!)

As we ask our cleaners for rush service on our lederhosen, we might temper our partying impulses with the reminder that Peter Graves– “Jim Phelps” in both TV runs of Mission Impossible and “Jim Newton” in Fury, among over 70 other TV and movie roles– died four days ago; he was born on this date 84 years ago.

The Graves family name was originally “Aursnes,” but was changed to “Arness” on immigration.  Peter took the stage name “Graves”; but his older brother stuck with the family handle– which television viewers saw for 20 years in credits of Gunsmoke: “Marshall Matt Dillon – James Arness.”

Peter Graves in 2009

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