US Army Flag

US Military Flags

US Army Flag Description:
The original US Army flag was made of white silk and measured 4 feet 4 inches by 5 feet 6 inches. The flag featured the national colors of red white and blue with the official war seal, in blue, in the center of it. Beneath the seal the words "United States Army" are written in white, on a scarlet scroll, and the year 1775 is written in blue below the scroll. The original War Office seal was authorized by the Continental Congress on May 8, 1779.

The US Army flag seal features a cannon in front of a drum with two drumsticks; below the cannon there are three cannon balls, a mortar on a trunion and below the mortar two powder flasks. In the center of the US Army flag seal is a Roman breastplate over a jupon (leather jacket). Above the breastplate rises a plain sword with the pommel and guard supporting a Phrygin cap between an esponton (pike). It has a organizational color on one side and a musket with a fixed bayonet and the national color on the other side. Above is a rattlesnake holding in its mouth a scroll inscribed, 'This We'll Defend.'

US Army Flag Meaning:
The Phrygian cap is the traditional symbol of liberty.

US Army Flag History:
Although the US Army was born in 1775, its official flag wasn't unfurled and dedicated until June 14, 1956, at Independence Hall in Philadelphia, PA; on the Army's 181st birthday. The US Army flag was officially adopted by order of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, through Executive Order No. 10670, on June 12, 1956. The flag was presented by Vice President, Richard Nixon to the Secretary of the Army, Wilber M. Brucker in a ceremony in Washington DC, on June 13, 1956. Although various divisions and battalions of the Army have their own flags, this flag represents the whole army.

Interesting US Army Flag Facts:
The flag was designed by the Heraldic Branch Office of Research and Engineering, Office of The Quartermaster General. Work on the flag began in July 1955, when the Secretary of the Army expressed a desire for a flag representing the army. Several flags were designed and this one was selected by Secretary of the War Brucker. The flag that Vice President Nixon presented to Secretary Brucker was hand embroidered by women needle workers at the Philadelphia Quartermaster Depot.

The flag has 175 streamers, each 2 3/4 inches wide and 4 feet long, attached to the staff. Embroidered on each streamer is the year (s) of each campaign. The streamers represent the number of campaigns the US Army has fought during the country's history. However, the campaign in Iraq is not included in the 175 number. The idea of using streamers originated in the US Civil War. The practice was stopped in 1890 and revived in 1921.

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