Stars and Stripes
Stars and Stripes is
the name for
the U.S. flag. It is also called the Old Glory or
The 50 stars
represent the 50 states.
The 13 stripes
represent the 13 original colonies.
The U.S. Department of State
The U.S. flag has undergone many changes
since the first official flag of 1777.
On June 14, 1777, the Continental Congress
passed the first Flag Act, which said that
the flag would be made up of thirteen
alternating red and white stripes and
thirteen white stars on a blue field. Stars
have been added to the flag as new states
join the union. Currently, the flag contains
Ever wonder why the flag is red, white, and
blue? While the flag's colors did not have a
specific meaning at the time, the colors
were significant for the Great Seal of 1782.
Why stars and stripes?
Stars are considered a symbol of the heavens
and the divine goal to which man has aspired
from time immemorial; the stripe is symbolic
of the rays of light emanating from the sun.
When are new stars added to the flag?
A new star is added to the flag on the July
4th following the entry into the Union of
the new state.
Who made the first flag and when?
Betsy Ross, made the first flag. Information
on Betsy Ross, the history of the flag and
on flag etiquette may be found at the Betsy
Ross Home Page maintained by the
Independence Hall Association of
The CIA tells you more:
The blue stands for loyalty, devotion,
truth, justice, and friendship; red
symbolizes courage, zeal, and fervency,
while white denotes purity and rectitude of
conduct; commonly referred to by its
nickname of Old Glory
Note: the design and colors have been the
basis for a number of other flags, including
Chile, Liberia, Malaysia, and Puerto Rico
Stars and Stripes was also the name of a
newspaper published by General John J Pershing.
Francis Scott Key wrote the
lyrics to what would become the national anthem of the United States
in 1931, The Star-Spangled Banner.
Here is more about the
flag that was raised on Iwo Jima in 1945
And then there's the song
Stars and Stripes Forever.