Who Designed the United States’ Current 50 Star Flag?
The United States flag is an iconic symbol that represents the nation’s principles, values, and unity. It is instantly recognizable with its vibrant red and white stripes and a field of stars on a blue background. The current design of the flag, featuring 50 stars, represents the 50 states of the United States. But who was responsible for designing this flag that is so deeply ingrained in American culture? In this article, we will explore the origins of the current 50-star flag and shed light on the designer behind this enduring symbol.
Origins of the 50 Star Flag:
The 50-star flag was adopted on July 4, 1960, after Hawaii officially became the 50th state of the United States. Prior to this, the flag had 48 stars, representing the 48 states that were part of the union until 1959. Alaska became the 49th state in January 1959, and Hawaii followed in August of the same year. The addition of these two states led to the design change from 48 to 50 stars.
The current 50-star flag was not designed by a single individual, but rather through a high school student’s project. In 1958, a history teacher named James G. Heft assigned his students at Lancaster High School in Ohio to create a new flag design in anticipation of Alaska and Hawaii becoming states. The task was to come up with a design that incorporated the two new states without making the flag too crowded.
Out of the many designs submitted by the students, a design by Robert G. Heft, a 17-year-old junior, was chosen. Heft’s design featured 50 stars arranged in staggered rows of alternating five and six stars on a blue field. Heft’s design was initially given a B- grade by his teacher, but when he presented it to his congressman, Walter Moeller, it caught the attention of the lawmakers.
The proposal for the new design was met with enthusiasm in Congress, and it was eventually adopted as the official flag of the United States on July 4, 1960. Robert G. Heft’s design was chosen out of over 1,500 submissions, making him the designer of the current 50-star flag.
Q: How many designs were submitted for the 50-star flag?
A: Over 1,500 designs were submitted by various individuals and organizations before Robert G. Heft’s design was chosen.
Q: How were the stars arranged in Heft’s design?
A: Heft’s design featured 50 stars arranged in staggered rows of alternating five and six stars on a blue field.
Q: What grade did Heft initially receive for his design?
A: Heft received a B- grade from his teacher for his design.
Q: Did Heft receive any recognition for his design?
A: Yes, Heft’s design was eventually adopted as the official flag of the United States, and he received recognition for his contribution.
Q: Was Heft involved in any other flag-related activities?
A: Heft was involved in several flag-related activities throughout his life, including designing flags for various organizations and lobbying for a constitutional amendment to protect the flag from desecration.
The current 50-star flag of the United States, representing the 50 states of the union, was not designed by a renowned artist or a government committee. Instead, it was the result of a project assigned to high school students, with Robert G. Heft’s design eventually being chosen. This flag has since become an enduring symbol of American unity and pride. It serves as a reminder of the nation’s growth and the importance of individual contributions to its rich history.