Firemen Should Know Flag Courtesies
Conventions are now taking place in various sections of the country. Such gatherings mean parades, decorated cards, flags displayed over the fire houses, and a gala attire for the entire town. But so few know how to properly display the flag, or the courtesy and respect that should be given it, that the Veterans of Foreign Wars have issued complete information on this subject.
It is reproduced here through the courtesy of the ex-soldiers.
A colored sheet containing this information has been distributed to all the fire stations in New York City for display.
It is easy to forget things. Perhaps, therefore, it might be well to post this page in the company office so that when next time the department has a parade or some public observance, the arrangement committee will know how to display the U. S. flag on the fire apparatus, at the speaker’s stand, or elsewhere.
Our flag should always have stars to the left of the picture, fabric floating to the right.
When hanging with the stripes in a vertical position against the wall, as shown in the picture, the stars should be in the upper left hand corner.
When our flag is carried with other flags in parade it should always claim the place of honor—at the right.
When flown at half-staff, the Flag should be hoisted to the peak for an instant and then lowered to the half-staff position; but before lowering the Flag for the day it should be raised again to the peak. On Memorial Day, May 30th, the Flag is displayed at half-staff from sunrise until noon and at full staff from noon until sunset.
Our Flag must not be used as a table cloth, nothing but the BIBLE can rest upon it.
Never place our flag in position of this illustration, below the seats on a platform or stand, or twisted in any fancy shape whatever.
To honor the passing of our Flag, when in civilian clothes stand at attention and place the hat with the right hand over the left breast. If in uniform execute the right hand salute.
No other flag should be hoisted above OUR FLAG except a church pennant, which is allowed ,to fly at the masthead above the stars and stripes when religious services are in progress in a military chapel or aboard a ship of our navy.
When flags of two or more Nations are displayed they should be flown from separate staffs of the same height and the flags should be of approximately equal size.
Bunting of the National colors should be used for covering a speaker’s desk or draping over the front of a platform and for decorations in general. The blue stripe should always be placed uppermost and the red at the bottom.
When used on a speaker’s platform, the Flag, if displayed flat, should be displayed above and behind the speaker. If flown from a staff, it should be in the position of honor, at the speaker’s right. It should never be used to cover the speaker’s desk nor to drape over the front of the platform. Use Bunting.
When the flag is displayed in the body of the church, it should be from a staff placed in the position of honor at the congregation’s right as they face the clergyman. The service flag, the State Flag, or other flag, should be at the left of the congregation. If in the chancel or on the platform, the Flag of the U. S. A. should be placed at the clergyman’s right as he faces the congregation, and the other flags at his left. See plate 12.
When flags or pennants of states, cities or societies are flown on the same halyard with the flag of the U. S. A., the flag of the U. S. A. should always be at the peak. When flown from adjacent staffs the Flag of the U. S. A. should be hoisted first and lowered last.
When the flag is displayed wi.th another flag as a picture with staffs crossed, the flag of the United States should be on the right; the flag’s own right, with the staff over the staff of the other flag.
When a number of flags of States or cities, or pennants of societies are grouped and displayed from staffs with the Flag of the U. S. A. the latter should be at the center or at the highest point of the group.
When the Flag is displayed from a staff projecting horizontally or at an angle from the window sill, balcony or front of building, the union of the Flag should go clear to the peak of the staff unless the at half-staff, the Flag is susover a sidewalk rope, extending from a house to a pole at the edge of the sidewalk, the Flag should be hoisted out from the building toward the pole, the union first.)
Do not display the Flag of the U. S. A., with the union down, except as a signal of distress.
When displayed over the middle of the street, the Flag of the U. S. A. should be suspended vertically with the union to the north in an east and west street, or to the east in a north and south street.
When used in connection with the unveiling of a statue or monument, the Flag should form a distinctive feature during the ceremony; but the Flag itself should never be used as a covering for a statue.
Do not let the Flag of the United States touch the ground or the floor, or trail in the water.
When the Flag is placed upon the grave, see that it is left in such a position so that it will not touch the ground.
When the flag is used on a casket it should be placed so that the stars are at the head in the upper right hand corner (over the heart) looking from the foot. The flag should not be lowered into the grave, nor allowed to touch the ground. Carry the casket foot first.
Do not drape the Flag over the hood, top, sides or back of a vehicle, or of a railway train or boat. When the Flag is displayed on a motor car, the staff should be affixed firmly to the chassis, or clamped to the radiator cap.
When the Flag is made up as a badge the blue union with the stars is on the right side, the Flag’s own right, the same position as if the Flag were displayed to public view.
The Shield of the United States. The shield of the United States has 13 vertical stripes, 7 white and 6 red with a blue chief without stars.