Our Star-Spangled Flag

July 01, 2015

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“Oh, say can you see by the dawn’s early light…

Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there”

I read recently that when Europeans visit New York there are two things they notice: the extensive use of credit cards and the flying of Old Glory all over town.

The Flag in a Window Box

That’s an excellent take on the Big Apple. Recently, I was standing on the corner of 7th Avenue and 11th Street waiting for the “Go” signal when I looked up and saw an American flag on the top floor of a 17-story building under construction. Later, I traveled uptown to Fifth Avenue and 38th Street where the front of Lord and Taylor was sporting no less than five gently waving American flags. It was quite a sight.

JULY 4TH IS COMING UP FAST

At this time of the year red-white-and-blue stars and stripes appear on paper plates, cups, napkins, tablecloths – you name it. The flag is tucked into Yellow Cabs, appears in window boxes and shows up at parades and barbecues.

How did all this begin? Legend has it that seamstress, Betsy Ross, was visited by George Washington in June 1776 (at the time of the American Revolution) who asked her to make a flag with 13 stars to represent the original 13 colonies. However, there is no firm evidence to support this story and it’s still being debated today.

 WHAT THE FLAG SYMBOLIZES

Since noticing the flag on Seventh Avenue, I’ve learned that it’s a tradition in the construction industry to mount a flag on the topmost floor. It’s called “topping out” or sometimes “topping off”.

Which bring us to this. Construction workers wear hard hats for safety. And many of these hats reflect American pride with red-white-and-blue stars, stripes and even eagles.

The Flag in a Laundry

Patriotism was at the forefront of the Hard Hat Riot of May 1970 in New York when pro-war workers in hard hats went after privileged protesters who were against the Vietnam War. These loyal blue-collar males were definitely making a statement.

FAMOUS FLAG MOMENTS 

One of the most renowned war photos, Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima, (taken by Joe Rosenthal) is of five U.S. Marines and one U.S. Navy corpsman with Old Glory on the island of Iwo Jima (660 miles south of Japan) in February 23, 1945. This Pulitzer Prize-winning photo became famous all over the world.

The second one, and an equally famous photo Raising the Flag at Ground Zero was shot by Thomas Franklin of The Record newspaper located in Bergen County, New Jersey. He caught this memorable moment on September 11, 2001. Franklin used a telephoto lens to take this shot of the three firefighters raising Old Glory. This remarkable photograph has often been compared to the Iwo Jima one.

MAY WE SUGGEST…

However you decide to enjoy the July 4th weekend you’ll find that ADEA fashions are great for times like this. Take a look at our sleeveless layering tops and our camis – all made from lightweight, packable Italian fabric. Our fashions work both for home and office. They also travel beautifully and arrive wrinkle-free and ready to wear.

Shaun Nelson-Henrick



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