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Stevens Blog

Remember the Flag -- and a Little History About It

On this July 4, Stevens Worldwide Van Lines reminds all citizens to fly the flag as a patriotic symbol in honor of our country.

Philadelphia seamstress and upholsterer Betsy Ross is long credited, but sometimes disputed, with sewing the first American flag. Legend has ingrained  that Ross was commissioned by the Second Continental Congress' Flag Committee in early 1776 to make the flag. Ross was an experienced flag maker, as upholsterers often were called up to make flags at that time. She was a member of the church George Washington attended. However, some historians frequently have disputed the Ross claim to history.

But, in April 2009, citing testimony from Ross' family members and paper patterns, the Pennsylvania Historical Museum Commission officially recognized Ross as "credited with making the first stars and stripes flag."

Some other July 4th history that might be of interest:

  • The Declaration of Independence was not approved and signed on July 4, 1776. Although the Continental Congress put five representatives in charge of developing a declaration, the other four selected Thomas Jefferson as the main author, as he was considered the most eloquent and influential writer of the group. Jefferson presented a draft to the Continental Congress on July 1, the the group made numerous revisions on July 3 and July 4. All of the delegates except those from New York approved it on July 4.
  • On July 5, 1776, a rough draft of the declaration was taken to a printer for leaflets to be produced.
  • On July 8, 1776, the Liberty Bell sounded from the tower of the Pennsylvania State House (which is now known as Independence Hall) summoning citizens to gather for a reading of the draft.
  • On July 9, 1776, the New York delegates finally approved the declaration.
  • It wasn't until Aug. 2, 1776 that 50 of the delegation signed the Declaration of Independence. Later five more signed, and the last signed in January 1777.
  • The first public Fourth of July event at the White House did not occur until the early 1800s.
  • Both John Adams, the second president of the United States (1797-1801) and Thomas Jefferson, the third president of the United States (1801-1809) died on July 4, 1826.



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