Technically, states didn’t exist at all, yet.
But on January 9, 1788, Connecticut became the fifth of the 13 colonies to ratify the proposed Constitution for the United States of America, and by that action set the date we count as Connecticut’s entery into the union.
Within 12 months, four more colonies ratified the document, totaling nine ratifications required to put the Constitution into effect. When the government of the new nation started functioning in 1789, Connecticut was counted as the fifth state.
To avoid political scheming by anti-federalist colony governors, especially Patrick Henry in Virginia, in September 1787 James Madison proposed that the draft constitution be ratified not by legislatures in the colonies, but instead by a specially-called convention of the people of the colony. Connecticut’s convention met first on January 3, 1788. With six days of discussion and debate, the convention passed a resolution of ratification on January 9.
So by tradition, January 9 is Connecticut’s statehood anniversary. According to U.S. law, the Flag Code and tradition, citizens and residents of a state fly their flags on statehood anniversaries.
Happy birthday Connecticut, 228 years old.
Next date to fly the U.S. flag is January 16, 2016, to honor the birth of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. January 16 is the official holiday; January 19 is the actual birthday. You may fly your colors on both dates.
- Connecticut’s Hall of Flags in the state capitol in Hartford (ConnecticutHistory.org)
- Recreating the Connecticut ratifying convention for history classrooms, background, teachers guide and supporting materials
- Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Georgia had already ratified; since Connecticut had been the sole dissenter in the call for the Philadelphia convention, some have expressed surprise that Connecticut ratified so quickly and easily — some historians attribute this to the efforts of Oliver Ellsworth, a too-much unsung hero of early American history
- Connecticut’s listing at Our Poetry Corner
- January 4 – Fly your flag for Utah statehood (timpanogos.wordpress.com)
- Iowa Statehood, December 28, 1846 – Iowans, fly your flags today (timpanogos.wordpress.com)
- Texas Statehood, December 29, 1845 – 167years ago (timpanogos.wordpress.com)
- Utah statehood: A coda, and a flag code violation (timpanogos.wordpress.com)
- Connecticut witness describes blimp-sized UFO as ‘glowing’ (examiner.com)