Each year on particular patriotic holidays we display our historic flag collection. You will see these for 3 or 4 days, then in June, another flag goes up. The historic flags may be displayed again in July.
Memorial Day was first observed following the Civil War, and there are multiple stories regarding its origin. However, a Memorial Day web site says this:
It is not important who was the very first, what is important is that Memorial Day was established. Memorial Day is not about division. It is about reconciliation; it is about coming together to honor those who gave their all.
And even though the holiday was first observed in 1866 or so, I honor all of those who died in service to our country from every war. I add flags that were flown during wars, and this collection is not complete, I guess.
The first flag represented the 13 colonies, thus had 13 stars. There were several versions, and the Betsy Ross flag is the most popular. This flag was sewn in 1776 (well, not this one, but one of the same design). I fly this flag to honor the Revolutionary War dead.
The "Star Spangled Banner" with 15 stars, inspired our National Anthem. It flew over Ft. McHenry during the War of 1812. This flags honors those who died during that war.
This flag is new to our collection. It has 20 stars, aligned in the shape of a star. By 1818 there were 20 states, and several designs with 20 stars were considered. It was called the Grand Star flag.
The U. S. was not at war during that time, but I do know that the U. S. Navy naval units were raiding slave traffic pursuant to the 1819 Act of Congress. I don't know that any seamen were killed during those raids, so let's let this flag honor all servicemen and women who died during non-war skirmishes and battles and such.
Next we fly a flag that was flown during the Civil War. This flag has 34 stars, that is the number of states including those which thought they could leave the union. This flag honors all, Northern and Southern, soldiers who died during that was.
Here is a flag with 48 stars that flew during World War II, when my dad fought in both Europe and the Pacific. This flag honors those who died during the Great War, as well as WWI and the Spanish American War since I don't have flags representing those wars yet.
And this is our current flag, with 50 stars. This flag flew during the Vietnam War, and the Iraq Wars and the Afghanistan War. I think we've had enough wars under this flag. This flag honors the dead from Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan.
The black mourning ribbon hanging from the flag mast is in place of flying a flag like this at half staff, since that is impossible.
This flag is out of order. It is the Bennington Flag, and could have been flown in 1777, but most historians date this flag between 1820 and 1830. Since we don't know, I placed it at the end, to represent those who will die in future wars while protecting our freedom. It is a fairly recognizable flag to have such an unsure past.
I also like having an unusual flag at the end, since that is the flag many will see as they drive by.
Remember those who have died securing and protecting our freedom.