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Did you ever wonder who designed the current American Flag?
50-Star Flag
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 Ohio.

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.

Now retired, Heft spent 30 years as a teacher. He has served seven terms as Mayor of Napoleon, Ohio and 25 years as a real estate broker. Born in Saginaw, Michigan but raised in Ohio, Heft recently returned to his native city and is the Education Manager for the Saginaw County Junior Achievement. He is also active in Habitat for Humanity and the Lions Club.

TO LEARN MORE

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 jingoism.
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 visual tribute

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 created.

(URL: www.usflag.org/flagdesigner.html)
Robert Heft's History Class Project
Vignettes from Fairfield County Treasures Volumes I and II, Article by Lisa R. Hooker.
(URL: www.thewritewordsltd.com/writingsamples.php?nam=history)

History of the Flag
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."

(URL: www.usflag.org/flag.evolution.html)
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.
(URL: www.ushistory.org/betsy/)
PBS Flag History
For more than 200 years, the American flag has been the symbol of our nation’s unity, as well as a source of pride and inspiration for millions of citizens.
(URL: www.pbs.org/capitolfourth/flag.html)
Star-Spangled Banner
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.
(URL: www.150.si.edu/chap3/flag.htm)
Proposed Flag Park and Museum
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.

(URL: www.bright.net/~freedom/)
Flag Education & Etiquette
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.

(URL: www.usflag.org/flag.etiquette.html)

WHERE TO FIND:
Residential 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.
Reference Sources in BOLD Type This page revised November 9, 3005.
 
   
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