Posted by: Kath Usitalo | June 14, 2012

Flag Day: A Great Idea From A Great Laker

Old Glory flies from the Glass Bottom Boat Shipwreck Tour, Munising

The United States celebrates its Star and Stripes with Flag Day on June 14, the date in 1777 that the Continental Congress adopted the red, white and blue banner symbolizing the USA.

It was a Great Laker, Bernard J. Cigrand of Waubeka, Wisconsin, who is credited with holding the first formal Flag Day observation on June 14, 1885 at Stony Hill School in Waubeka (north of Milwaukee).

He was a teacher who displayed a small, 10-inch flag and had his students write essays about what the flag meant to them.

The “Father of Flag Day” became a dentist who moved to Chicago and, through speeches and articles, continued to be an active promoter of patriotism and respect for the flag.

He is honored in the National Flag Day Americanism Center in his hometown of Waubeka.

On May 30, 1916, President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed an official day of recognition of the flag, and in 1949 President Harry Truman, with an Act of Congress, designated June 14 Flag Day.

In 2004 Congress decreed that Flag Day originated in Ozaukee County, Wisconsin.

This story first appeared in Great Lakes Gazette, June 14, 2010

Related Link:

Munising Bay Glass Bottom Boat Shipwreck Tours

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