Flags at the Smithsonian
In celebration of Flag Day, we've collected a variety of flags from all around the Smithsonian to explore and learn about.
There are a lot of amazing objects in the Smithsonian. But Smithsonian staff are curious: which one do YOU think is the most iconic? (Our pick: the Star-Spangled Banner!) Cast your vote here.
This flag was included in the special "gift bag," in which several exchange items were carried aboard the Apollo command module during the joint US-USSR Apollo-Soyuz Test Project mission.
NASA presented this flag, mission patch and certificate as mementos of the first Space Shuttle Mission, STS-1, in 1981.
This flag was inside astronaut John Glenn's Friendship 7 Mercury Capsule when he became the first American to orbit Earth. The flag, apparently packed inside the spacecraft, came with Friendship 7 when it was given to the Smithsonian Institution by NASA in 1963.
The American flag is often seen in summer's patriotic celebrations. Don't forget to keep the Flag Code in mind for Flag Day this Saturday.
Should you bring your flag indoors during inclement weather? Brush up on your etiquette in time for Flag Day on June 14.
The museum removed 1.7 million stitches (a previous preservation attempt) from the Star-Spangled Banner.
The flag hung vertically for almost 40 years. Now it’s at a 10 degree angle in an hypoxic environment.
Folded Flag #2, 2001, Mimi Herbert, silk-screened formed acrylic 36 x 27 1/2 x 5 3/4 in. (91.4 x 69.9 x 14.6 cm), Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of the artist 2002.83
American Flag Whirligig, mid 20th century, unidentified artist, painted iron and carved and painted wood 28 1/4 x 38 1/2 x 28 1/4 in. (71.8 x 97.8 x 71.8 cm.), Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Herbert Waide Hemphill, Jr. and museum purchase made possible by Ralph Cross Johnson 1986.65.371
Flag Holder, 19th century, unidentified artist, carved and painted wood 20 7/8 x 14 1/4 x 3 1/2 in. (53.0 x 36.2 x 8.9 cm), Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Herbert Waide Hemphill, Jr. and museum purchase made possible by Ralph Cross Johnson 1986.65.80
Sled Decorated with Stars and Stripes, late 19th century, unidentified artist, painted wood with metal runners, sleigh bell, and leather strap 9 x 49 x 17 in. (22.9 x 124.5 x 43.2 cm), Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Herbert Waide Hemphill, Jr. and museum purchase made possible by Ralph Cross Johnson 1986.65.88
Beaded Whimsy, Niagara Falls style, circa 1900, Unidentified Seneca/Iroquois Artist, glass beads on cardboard-reinforced cotton with wool and sawdust 15 7/8 x 7 x 2 3/8 in. (40.2 x 17.7 x 6.0 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Herbert Waide Hemphill, Jr. and museum purchase made possible by Ralph Cross Johnson 1986.65.356
Did you know? The Star-Spangled Banner has a sibling flag and nobody knows where it is. Click through to find out why. #raiseitup
There were more than 15 states when the Star-Spangled Banner was made, but there are only 15 stars on the flag. More flag facts on the blog.
Inspired by the flag flying over Fort McHenry during a War of 1812 battle, Francis Scott Key wrote the national anthem. But why is it so hard to sing? Click through to find out.
Big, old flags have a hard life. How the Star-Spangled Banner is doing now, having survived the War of 1812 and other challenges in its 200 years.
Visitors at the National Museum of American History unfold a replica of the Star-Spangled Banner as they honor and celebrate Nisei soldiers and the arrival of the Congressional Gold Medal to the museum. Photo by Harold Dorwin #Go4Broke
Maybe you've seen the real Star-Spangled Banner in the museum. But have you seen these fragments? Probably not. In our latest 4-minute episode of "Founding Fragments," you can do exactly that.