The National Postal Museum honors Flag Day with the featured collection “Long May It Wave: The Story of the American Flag through Stamps” on its Web site.
Considering the complexity of establishing a functioning national government, the design and creation of a country’s flag is among the more simple tasks. The American flag exemplifies this simplicity in its design with 13 stripes for the number of colonies that rebelled against the British to the stars representing the number of states in the union. Even with all the symbols, structures and people that have come to represent the United States, none can evoke as much feeling, significance and history as the American flag.
“Long May It Wave: The Story of the American Flag through Stamps,” explores the history of the American flag itself, the day that celebrates its birth, Flag Day, and the many connections the flag has to events in American history and everyday life. As windows into America’s history and culture, postage stamps are perfectly suited to illustrate the story of the flag. Over the years, U.S. stamps have depicted the flag through its many incarnations in ceremonial settings, during periods of monumental conflict to moments of great triumph. Revolutionary War soldiers, Marines during the Battle of Iwo Jima, the NASA astronauts who landed on the moon and millions of average Americans all share a common bond in their displays of the American flag.
The National Postal Museum is devoted to presenting the colorful and engaging history of the nation’s mail service and showcasing the largest and most comprehensive collection of stamps and philatelic material in the world. It is located at 2 Massachusetts Ave. N.E., in the Old City Post Office Building across from Union Station. The museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. For more information visit the museum’s Web site at postalmuseum.si.edu.
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