Sunday, June 13, 2010

Happy Flag Day! You Know Betsy Ross, but what about Samuel Chester Reid?

Happy Flag Day! The photo mosaic above was made with photos  that I took of the American flag at different times and places in New York City. (all photos can be enlarged by clicking on them once and then again when they reopen. To return to the post use your browser's back arrow)
In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation that officially established June 14 as Flag Day.  In August 1949, President Harry Truman signed the legislation and proclaimed June 14 as Flag Day.  

On June 14, 1777, the Continental Congress of the United States approved the official design for the flag featuring 13 white stars in a circle on a field of blue and 13 red and white stripes – one for each state. President George Washington interpreted the symbolism of the United States Flag this way: "We take the stars from Heaven, the red from our 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."

Most Americans know the story of Betsy Ross being credited with making the first stars and stripes American flag in 1777, but did you know that Samuel Chester Reid (August 24, 1783 – January 28, 1861) was the person who designed the flag as we know it today?

According to a scholarly article written by C. W. Tazewell on this web site: "Capt. Reid designed the third version of the Stars and Stripes in 1818 at the request of a Congressional Committee headed by Peter H. Wendover, Representative from New York City. The original flag of the United States of America was created by Resolution of Congress on June 14, 1777, with thirteen stars and stripes. The second Flag Act was passed in 1794 to authorize fifteen stars and fifteen stripes due to entry of Vermont and Kentucky into the Union. By 1818 there were twenty states and entry of others was expected soon. It was impractical to continue to add stripes as more and more states were admitted. So, Wendover's committee adopted Reid's proposal that the stripes be fixed at thirteen with one star for each state. On acceptance of the design by Congress, Mrs. Reid made the first new flag with silk provided by the government. It was flown from the Capitol dome on April 13, 1818."

Samuel Chester Reid was an officer in the United States Navy who commanded a privateer during the War of 1812 General Armstrong off the Azores, he took on a British fleet, delaying its arrival in Louisiana, and enabling General Andrew Jackson to triumph over the British at the Battle of New Orleans.

For many years, Reid was in an unmarked grave in Brooklyn, New York's National Historic Landmarked Green-Wood Cemetery, but his grave finally was marked on October 28, 1956 with a granite monument that describes his accomplishments and a flagstaff from which flies an American flag. The story about the how his grave was finally honored can be read on The Green -Wood Discovery Blog written by the cemetery historian, Jeff Richman.


Be proud of the flag and all it stands for!  To read the flag code for rules of proper display of the flag see this link.


I am linking this post to Mary's "Mosaic Monday" event of her blog The Little Red House.Please visit Mary's blog today to see her beautiful photo mosaic and links to all the blog participating today in her event.





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58 comments:

Allie and Pattie said...

Pat, I never come here without learning something! Fabulous post!
xoxo Pattie

Willow said...

Very interesting. I did not know about SC Reid.

Lily Hydrangea said...

You certainly know a lot about our flag Pat!
Really, that is an amazing amount of information. Thanks for the great link too.
I remember when my son was in Cubscouts, it was very enlightening to find out how we as Americans should show respect for the flag. I had no idea how involved all the rules are. Your post is a good reminder.

merrilymarylee said...

Proper flag display is a real thing with me. It aggravates me that people put it out, then treat it so recklessly. Better not to put it out at all!

I wish they'd give Olympic athletes--and American spectators-- a few lessons, too.

Vee said...

When I saw this post a little earlier I was shocked that I had forgotten Flag Day. You've done the 14th of June very proud. No, I didn't know much of this information. I didn't know that George Washington had a story for the meaning behind the flag. I have heard many others, but not that one and I particularly like it. Didn't know a thing about Samuel Chester Reid either so that was all very interesting and a very practical idea. Thanks for the beautiful mosaic and the wonderful history lesson. I'm sending John over next. ;>

Terri Steffes said...

Nicely done! I love to learn new things!!!

A Garden of Threads said...

Wonderful mosaic. Thanks for sharing the information of the American flag.

Snap said...

Wonderful mosaic and I learned so much about Flag Day!

Mary said...

Oh Pat, I love to come here and see your beautiful images, and learn something new! :)

Shirley said...

I never knew about Samuel Chester Reid! And you're the first post I've seen that mentions flag day!! Shame on us!

Ebie said...

Ms. Pat, your blog is full of information on top of your lovely photos.

Thanks for sharing a part of our history.

Mosaic Monday

grey like snuffie said...

Great post Pat. You have some info on here that I didn't know. I knew flags were flown on special occasions and when I was really little I figured everybody was flying their flag to celebrate my birthday. lol

Laurie said...

Such a beautiful mosaic & photos as well as interesting information - I did not know about Samuel Reid, either.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Happy Flag Day to you Pat.... Neat Post... I had read about Samuel Chester Reid --but you are right... Betsy Ross is the one who gets most of the credit.

Great post... Thanks!
Hugs,
Betsy

Ciao Chow Linda said...

I completely forgot it was flag day. And I never heard of that Reid fellow, but now I know who he is, thanks to you.

Bobbi said...

Loved your post...thank you and Happy Flag Day!
Hugs...
Bobbi

Debbie said...

Andy happy Flag Day to you too. Thank you for not only some great photos but a little history as well.

Catherine said...

I forgot about Flag Day. Thank you for the reminder. Love the flag mosaic.

Regina said...

Happy Flag Day. Such beautiful mosaic.
Thanks for the info Pat.
Happy MM. And a great week ahead.

mrs. c said...

Pat,
Happy belated birthday! You always have such interesting posts and I learn something new each day from you! thanks for your imput and comments!

Debbie said...

No I did not know that about Samuel...you are so full of information. What a beautiful mosaic. Thanks for your kind encouraging words....it is helping, til I go on FB and see the other Moms feeling sad...lol!!~ I know he will have a blast.

Joyce said...

I had no idea about SC Reid and you are such a good teacher on our blog to share this information. I missed your last post and so I am sorry I missed wishing you a HAPPY BIRTHDAY. I found a link to the penpal site on another blog and signed up and thought it would be fun. This will be my first time so any guidance you can give me would be appreciated. Thanks for your well wishes and thank God I feel much better tonight.
Joyce

Jackie said...

Hi Pat, what great information you are sharing on your post. You take such great photographs too, so bright and clear.
Thank you for sharing. Have a good week, Jackie in UK.

Old Kitty said...

Happy Flag Day to you!

Thank you for such an informative piece about the US flag. I knew that the stars represented the states of America but I didn't know that both stars and stripes were originally used to do so.

I didn't know about Betsy Rose or Samuel Chester Reid - so thank you for their introduction. It's amazing how certain people are lost in history - Reid's grave being left unmarked until 1956 for instance. Glad he (and Mrs Reid) was found and is now given the proper accolade.

Betsy Rose was a fascinating woman too - and shows what one can do with cloth and thread- good for her!

Take care
x

eileeninmd said...

Very interesting post, I also learned something new. Your photos are wonderful. Have a great week.

Laura in Paris said...

I learned a lot, thank you! And I love your flag mosaic!

Jojo said...

Thank you for your post. The young man who died would have celebrated his first anniversary on Flag Day. Everything about this young man was patriotic.

Thank you for posting the beautiful flag mosaic.

The Quintessential Magpie said...

Neat post, Pat! You always have the best ones on your blog, both entertaining in their beauty and educational.

I just posted below, but again, I am just SO upset I missed your birthday. Please know I'm sending you HUGE birthday hugs across the miles...

XO,

Sheila :-)

Just a little something from Judy said...

Once again, I really appreciated this post, and the flag site that you provided. I visited it and read all the rules. It should be required reading for all Americans. Your flag mosaic is well done. Thanks for sharing this valuable info about a special part of American life.

black eyed susans kitchen said...

Wonderful post Pat! Your pictures are beautiful, and I did not know the history behind the making of the flag. When I was a girl scout, I did learn all about how to care for it though.
♥, Susan

Riet said...

Every time I come to visit I learn something from you. That is wonderful and we are never too old to learn are we. LOL Great pictures of your flag

Judy ~ My Front Porch said...

I always learn lots over here! You are a natural teacher, Pat...and your classroom is a fun place to learn. Now I know lots about the American flag.

Shelia said...

Hi Pat! Oh, what I learn when I come to visit you! This is a great post and I feel honored to live in this country! I'm brought to tears many times when I see our proud colors flying! That's a beautiful mosaic you've created!
Thank you so much for popping in to see me. I always appreciate your visits.
Be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

Claudia@DipityRoad said...

What a cool thing to know.

I love how our flag is transitional and beautiful no matter the number of stars.

I have a flag of my grandmothers with only 48 stars... its cool.

thanks for the information always...such a great stop.

Hope to see you this Friday! have the best week hon.

claudia

Lisa@GrandmasBriefs said...

Thank you for sharing the story of Mr. Reid. I don't recall ever hearing about him. Although I hope my teachers teach me years and years ago and it's just my memory that has failed, not the public school system. I appreciate the enlightenment and fab photos!

podso said...

Totally forgot it was flag day until too late to put out the flag (storm arrived). Thanks for all the history. Loved seeing all the photos. (I think I told you I went to school in NYC.)

Junie Moon said...

I'm glad you wrote about Flag Day and, yes indeed, I'm very proud of our flag.

Foley said...

Beautiful flag mosaic - loved the history lesson also - have to admit I did not know about Capt. Reid.

Rob said...

The things we learn from each other via blogging, thanks! Happy flag day!

xinex said...

What a great mosaic! Happy Flag day and thanks for the info...Christine

George said...

Thanks for a very interesting post. I did not know about Samuel Chester Reid. Thanks for the education -- and for the wonderful pictures.

Annesphamily said...

You always have such lovely posts! I knew this story but I like the pictures you have accompanying the story. Thanks for telling me about the spam/scam you received. I knew immediately that anyone dumb enough to send it to me myself and I was a hacker. I spammed it and I changed up Aim and Blogger. I can not access Face Book and I know that is where it is coming from. Once I can access FB I will dump it for good!Thanks again Pat. Have a great week! Anne

KarenHarveyCox said...

What a beautiful post Pat. Happy flag day to you to. I love the links too.

Karen

Melanie said...

I didn't know any of that Pat. Thanks for the info.

Tracy said...

WOW--this is fascinating! You know what I love about visiting here, Pat...well, MANY are the reasons. But I learn so much, and so often it's not things ever learned back in school--LOL! Thanks for so much amazing information and wonders shared here all the time. Flag Day was my grandmother's birthday, so I was thinking of her much yesterday. I will be taking an unexpected break the rest of the week, so may be slow to be around. I will post about it tomorrow. Happy Week :o) ((HUGS))

Tara said...

Hi Pat

Ah, doesn't all great histoy come out of Brooklyn? My Dad thinks so! haha! What a great post!

And school is almost over, so I am back at blogging! Yeah!

My name is PJ. said...

I love learning something while looking at pretty photos!

Gracie said...

Thanks for one more lesson in american history! Nice photos....

Pondside said...

That was an interesting post - you have reason to be proud of your flag!

thestonerabbit said...

I loved reading this post about Flag Day and the history of our flag! I pray for our countrymen and women who have given so much that we might have the privilege to proudly display our flags.

Again, another one of your wonderful posts! L, Dana

Oliag said...

I knew yesterday was flag day and this post is the best way I could have celebrated it!...Fantastic!

La Petite Gallery said...

I never knew about Sam or his wife. Thanks for that info. I also read the code, I hope they arrested those protesters that write on the flag. Queston, then are the festoons draped flags
OK ? The ones that drape houses. also Now I am worried about my 4th of July Flag hand bag.
LOL only kidding, how about the shirts??

Great post. yvonne

myletterstoemily said...

thank you for the fun history lesson
go chester! love that flag!

your mosaic is just lovely.

thanks for making it such a treat
to visit here.

Claudia said...

Oh Pat - so much wonderful info. How grand there is a cemetery historian to unearth knowledge of who is buried there and allow respect to be paid. White Bear Lake used to line the main streets with American flags on Flag Day. t was such a smile on my way to work. I do miss that.

Kathleen said...

What a great mosaic!
I knew Betsy was mostly folklore, but didn't know the designer.
That boat in my post was from Bay Ridge. My neighbor owns a huge dealership there, and 3 houses here!

Christina said...

i love visiting here. i always learn something new.
and such beautiful photos too!
: )

Melinda Cornish said...

We put out our flag too....I never knew the back story though...Now I do!

Sue said...

Pat, I ALWAYS learn something when I stop by for a visit! I love seeing all of your photos, and I know I'm going to come away with some valuable and interesting info, as well. Thanks for sharing so much with us!
hugs, Sue