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Quotations for USA Flag Day



All hail to our glorious ensign!... May it ever wave in honor, in unsullied glory and patriotic hope... But why should this flag stir your hearts and make your spirits burn within you? Because immortal honor hangs thick on every square inch of its fabric... The whole inspiration of our life as a nation flows out from the waving folds of this banner... It has been stormed at with shot and shell and torn to tatters in a hundred battles, but it has always waved for freedom... It stands now for a united people... ~Anonymous, "Old Glory," Commencement Parts, compiled by Harry Cassell Davis, 1898


All hail to thee, Old Glory!
Of thee our heart's desire
Foretells a golden story,
For thou hast come through fire.
~Henry Van Dyke, "From Glory Unto Glory: American Flag Song," 1918


Off with your hat as the flag goes by!
And let the heart have its say;
You're man enough for a tear in your eye
That you will not wipe away...
~H. C. Bunner, "The Old Flag," Airs from Arcady and Elsewhere, 1884


Your flag and my flag—
And how it flies to-day!
In your land and my land,
And half the world away!
Rose-red and blood-red,
The stripes forever gleam;
Snow-white and soul-white—
The good forefathers' dream;
Sky-blue and true-blue, with stars to shine aright—
The gloried guidon of the day, a shelter through the night...
~Wilbur D. Nesbit, "Your Flag and My Flag," c.1905


All hail to thee, Young Glory!
Among the flags of earth
We'll ne'er forget the story
Of thy heroic birth.
~Henry Van Dyke, "From Glory Unto Glory: American Flag Song," 1918


It waves for you and it waves for me,
In all its splendid majesty:
This olden, golden flag that holds
Our hearts and faith within its folds,—
Long live the Stars and Stripes!
~W. Dayton Wegefarth (1885–1973), "Our Flag," Rainbow Verse: A Book of Helpful Sunny Philosophy, 1919


Your flag and my flag—
And oh, how much it holds!
Your land and my land
Secure within its folds!
Your heart and my heart
Beat quicker at the sight—
Sun-kissed and wind-tossed—
Red and blue and white.
The one flag—the great flag—the flag for me and you—
Glorified all else beside—the red and white and blue.
~Wilbur D. Nesbit, "Your Flag and My Flag," c.1905


      It is the American flag. Just that and nothing more. No other adjective is ever prefixed to that word. It stands for the history of the United States and the traditions of our people... It is the flag just as much of the man who was naturalized yesterday as of the man whose people have been here generations... It means freedom of speech and freedom of thought... Look close upon it and you will see a great procession of men who have given all that life holds dearest that that flag might stand... They sacrificed everything that no star should be removed or diminished...
      They flag may call upon us again for protection, and when it does, the response will be the same; but bear in mind, that if the citizens protect the flag, the flag must protect the citizens. Wherever any American goes legally and observing the law, there the flag goes with him, and there it must ever go. We cannot afford as a nation to allow the humblest citizen among us to suffer in any way wrong or injustice...
      The flag stands for all that we hold dear, freedom, democracy, government of the people, by the people, and for the people. These are the great principles for which the flag stands... ~Henry Cabot Lodge, "What the Flag Means," in The World Court: A Magazine of International Progress, October 1915


That piece of red, white and blue bunting means five thousand years of struggle upward. It is the full-blown flower of ages of fighting for liberty. It is the century plant of human hope in bloom. Your flag stands for humanity, for an equal opportunity to all the sons of men. Of course, we haven't arrived yet at that goal; there are many injustices yet among us, but the only hope of righting the wrongs of men lies in the feeling produced in our bosoms by the sight of that flag. It stands for no race... It stands for men, men of any blood who will come and live with us under its protection. Other flags mean a glorious past, this flag a glorious future. Its power and influence mean that in due time, slowly and by force of law, the last ancient fraud shall be smitten, the last unearned privilege removed, the last man shall have a place to work and a living wage, the last woman shall have all her rights of person and of citizenship... The flag of the United States of America, which has never stood for the narrowness of race nor the pride of blood, but always and only for human rights... ~Frank Crane, c.1915


All hail to thee, New Glory!
We follow thee unfurled
To write the larger story
Of Freedom for the World
~Henry Van Dyke, "From Glory Unto Glory: American Flag Song," 1918


Your flag and my flag—
To every star and stripe
The drums beat as hearts beat,
And fifers shrilly pipe.
Your flag and my flag—
A blessing in the sky!
Your hope and my hope—
It never hid a lie!
Home land and far land, and half the world around,
Old Glory hears the great salute and flutters to the sound.
~Wilbur D. Nesbit, "Your Flag and My Flag," c.1905





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