||The man credited with designing the American flag
is Robert Heft. He earned his place in history in 1958 while living with his grandparents in
His updated 50-star flag was a class project later
adopted by presidential proclamation after Alaska and before Hawaii was admitted to the
union in 1959. Since Heft's flag was made public, he's been in all 50 state and 37 foreign
countries, making hundreds of speeches and traveling more than 100,000 miles a year. Heft
also has been the guest of nine U.S. presidents at the White House. Heft is the former
eight-time mayor of Napoleon, Ohio, and has served as president of the state's Mayor's
Association. During his career, Heft taught at Northwest State Community College, and also
works as a real estate broker. Heft's stars-and-stripes flag has been the second longest
serving design since the nation's founding.
As a 17-year-old high school junior, Heft found himself in need of a
class project. His proposed flag idea was initially turned down by the teacher. He went
ahead and finished his project, receiving a B minus for his efforts. Heft's teacher
compromised and promised to deliver a better classroom grade if he could get the U.S.
Congress to accept his flag. The rest is history.
ON THE BOOKSHELF:
Flag : An American Biography
by Marc Leepson, Nelson DeMille (Foreword) / Hardcover: 352 pages /
Thomas Dunne Books (2005)
The nation turns to it as an
emotional, political, and patriotic symbol in good times and bad.
Americans fly it everywhere we live and everywhere we go, from front
porches in Florida to pickup trucks in Alaska. We display the
red-white-and-blue American flag at festive events to celebrate and, at
times of national tragedy, to grieve and show our resolve. We wrap
ourselves in it in displays of patriotism, politics, nationalism, and
United We Stand:
Flying the American Flag
by Peter Gwillim Kreitler / Paperback: 120 pages / Chronicle Books (December, 2001)
To celebrate Independence Day, virtually every major U.S. magazine came together in
the summer following Pearl Harbor to feature the image of the American flag on its
cover-inspiring a country at war from newsstands across the nation. United We Stand
collects more than 100 of the most striking covers from the campaign in this stirring
ON THE WEB:
Robert G. Heft
Heft's niche in history is already secure as the designer of the country's 50-star flag 29
years ago, but his dream is to have his second version accepted when a new state is
Robert Heft's History Class Project
Vignettes from Fairfield County Treasures Volumes I and II, Article by
Lisa R. Hooker.
History of the
On June 14, 1777, in order to establish an official flag for the new nation, the
Continental Congress passed the first Flag Act: "Resolved, That the flag of the
United States be made of thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be
thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new Constellation."
The Betsy Ross Homepage
The American flag flies on the moon, sits atop Mount Everest, is hurtling out in
space. The flag is how America signs her name.
For more than 200 years, the American flag has been the symbol of our nations
unity, as well as a source of pride and inspiration for millions of citizens.
During the night, there had been only occasional sounds of the fort's guns
returning fire. At dawn, the British bombardment tapered off. Had the fort been captured?
Placing a telescope to his eye, Key trained it on the fort's flagpole. There he saw the
large garrison flag catch the morning breeze. It had been raised as a gesture of defiance,
replacing the wet storm flag that had flown through the night.
Proposed Flag Park and
Freedom Field is a planned 30-acre Educational park and museum dedicated to the universal
symbol representing freedom and liberty throughout the world; the Flag of the United
States of America.
Flag Education &
The Flag Code, which formalizes and unifies the traditional ways in which we give respect
to the flag, also contains specific instructions on how the flag is not to be used.
WHERE TO FIND:
In-Ground Pole Flag Set
Valley Forge / AFP20F / ASIN: B000059MTO
This set includes: 3 foot by 5 foot Perma-Nyl 100 percent US flag, embroidered stars,
double stitched sewn stripes and white canvas heading with brass grommets. 16 gauge by 2
inches OD aluminum pole with satin anodized finish, 3 inch gold anodized aluminum ball, 6
inch die cast aluminum cleat.
WORDS OF WISDOM:
"There is little that is
more important for an American citizen to know than the history and
traditions of his country." -- John F. Kennedy
"In God We Trust." - Dwight David Eisenhower
DID YOU KNOW?
- The flag that made Heft famous is soiled and faded from
frequent display. It has flown over every state capital building and over 88 U.S.
embassies. An uneven patch at a lower corner is evidence of an attack on the embassy in
Saigon in 1967.
- "It's the only flag in America's history to have flown
over the White House under five administrations,"
- Heft said he has turned down offers of
up to $350,000 to sell his first flag
- Lloyds of London has insured the
original 50-star Old Glory for $500,000.