“Raising the first American flag, Somerville, Mass., January 1, 1776.” Harper’s Weekly painting by Clyde Osmer DeLand, 1897. From the digital collections of the New York Public Library; yes, MFB has used this painting before. I like it.
One problem with January’s flag flying dates is that if I snooze a little, you miss a lot. There are four flag-flying dates in the first five days of January: New Year’s Day and statehood days for Georgia, Alaska and Utah. You, Dear Reader, are alert and didn’t let any of those dates pass unmarked if you’re in those states, right?
There are six more dates to go in January 2021, including New Mexico’s statehood today. We’re not halfway done, yet.
In January 2020, the U.S. Flag Code urges citizens to fly flags on these dates, listed chronologically:
New Year’s Day, January 1, a federal holiday
January 2, Georgia Statehood Day
January 3, Alaska Statehood Day
January 4, Utah Statehood Day
January 6, New Mexico Statehood Day
January 9, Connecticut Statehood Day
Martin Luther King’s Birthday, a federal holiday on the third Monday of January; that date is January 18, in 2021; King’s actual birthday is January 15, and you may fly your flag then, too
Inauguration Day, January 20, the year after election years; 2021 will see the inauguration of President Joseph R. Biden (first President named Joe; what took so long?)
January 26, Michigan Statehood Day
January 29, Kansas Statehood Day
You may fly your flag any other day you wish, too; flags should not be flown after sundown unless they are specially lighted, or at one of the few places designated by Congress or Presidential Proclamation for 24-hour flag flying. According to Wikipedia’s listing, those sites include:
Fort McHenry, Baltimore, Maryland (Presidential Proclamation No. 2795, July 2, 1948).
Flag House Square, Albemarle and Pratt Streets, Baltimore, Maryland (Public Law 83-319, approved March 26, 1954).
White House, Washington, D.C. (Presidential Proclamation No. 4000, September 4, 1970).
Washington Monument, Washington, D.C. (Presidential Proclamation No. 4064, July 6, 1971, effective July 4, 1971).
Any port of entry to the United States which is continuously open (Presidential Proclamation No. 413 1, May 5, 1972).
Grounds of the National Memorial Arch in Valley Forge State Park, Valley Forge, Pennsylvania (Public Law 94-53, approved July 4, 1975).
Flag House in 1936, where Mary Pickersgill sewed the garrison-sized, 15-star flag that flew over Fort McHenry at the Battle of Baltimore in 1814; one of the sites where the U.S. flag may be flown 24 hours. The house is at 844 East Pratt & Albemarle Streets (Baltimore, Independent City, Maryland). Cropped image courtesy of the federal HABS—Historic American Buildings Survey of Maryland.
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Retired teacher of law, economics, history, AP government, psychology and science. Former speechwriter, press guy and legislative aide in U.S. Senate. Former Department of Education. Former airline real estate, telecom towers, Big 6 (that old!) consultant. Lab and field research in air pollution control.
My blog, Millard Fillmore's Bathtub, is a continuing experiment to test how to use blogs to improve and speed up learning processes for students, perhaps by making some of the courses actually interesting. It is a blog for teachers, to see if we can use blogs. It is for people interested in social studies and social studies education, to see if we can learn to get it right. It's a blog for science fans, to promote good science and good science policy. It's a blog for people interested in good government and how to achieve it.
BS in Mass Communication, University of Utah
Graduate study in Rhetoric and Speech Communication, University of Arizona
JD from the National Law Center, George Washington University