Flag Day observance held on June 14

Flag Day is coming up on Thursday, a day designated to show respect for the flag of the United States of America.

According to http://www.usflag.org, Flag Day was first observed in 1885.

“BJ Cigrand, a schoolteacher, arranged for the pupils in the Fredonia, Wisconsin Public School, District 6, to observe June 14 (the 108th anniversary of the official adoption of The Stars and Stripes) as ‘Flag Birthday’. In numerous magazines and newspaper articles and public addresses over the following years, Cigrand continued to enthusiastically advocate the observance of June 14 as ‘Flag Birthday’, or ‘Flag Day,” states the website.

The website additionally states Flag Day was officially established through a proclamation from President Woodrow Wilson on May 30, 1916, in response to several decades of Flag Day celebration on the state and local level.

Although Flag Day was observed in various places for many years following Wilson’s proclamation, it took until Aug. 3, 1949, for an act of Congress – signed by President Harry Truman – to designate June 14 as an annual observation known as National Flag Day.

While different people have different opinions on what the flag means to them, freedom and unity are common threads that seems to run through many people’s thoughts on the flag.

According to Danny Gallagher, a Connecticut native who has lived in Harlan for decades, the flag represents the best of America.

“It represents America and unity,” Gallagher said. “I enjoy every day and celebrate my freedoms.”

A grandmother and her granddaughter, both of Evarts, also had some thoughts on the flag.

“The flag stands for our freedom and all the men that have fought for it,” said Una Wynn.

Wynn’s granddaughter Jada Cargle, 18, added her perspective.

“It stands for freedom, and it stands for our nation as a whole,” Cargle said. “It’s a symbol of what America is, and it should be respected.”

For more information on the history of Flag Day, visit http://www.usflag.org/history/flagday.html