U.S. Flag Information

U.S. Code Title 4.
Flag and Seal, Seat of Government, and the States
As of May 2011


Chapter 1 - The Flag

Table of Contents

Introduction
Sec. 1. Flag; stripes and stars on.
Sec. 2. Same; additional stars.
Sec. 3. Use of flag for advertising purposes; mutilation of flag.
Sec. 4. Pledge of allegiance to the flag; manner of delivery.
Sec. 5. Display and use of flag by civilians; codification of rules and customs; definition.
Sec. 6. Time and occasions for display.
Sec. 7. Position and manner of display.
Sec. 8. Respect for flag.
Sec. 9 Conduct during hoisting, lowering or passing of flag.
Sec. 10. Modification of rules and customs by President.

Introduction

This information was obtained from the House of Representatives WWW server on October 24, 2000. If you are using it for legal research, we urge you to verify your results with the printed U.S. Code available through the U.S. Government Printing Office.

The United States Code is the official, subject matter order, compilation of the Federal laws of a general and permanent nature that are currently in force. The Code is compiled by the Office of the Law Revision Counsel of the United States House of Representatives. The Code is divided into 50 titles by subject matter. Each title is divided into sections. Sections within a title may be grouped together as subtitles, chapters, subchapters, parts, subparts, or divisions. Titles may also have appendices which may be divided into sections, rules and/or forms. We cite here sections from the U.S. Code Title 4. Flag and Seal, Seat of Government, and the States, Chapter 1, The Flag.

Sec. 1. Flag; stripes and stars on

Statute

The flag of the United States shall be thirteen horizontal stripes, alternate red and white; and the union of the flag shall be forty-eight stars, white in a blue field.

Source

(July 30, 1947, ch. 389, 61 Stat. 642.)

Executive Orders

EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 10798

Ex. Ord. No. 10798, Jan. 3, 1959, 24 F.R. 79, which prescribed proportions and sizes of flags until July 4, 1960, was revoked by section 33 of Ex. Ord. No. 10834, set out as a note under this section.

EXECUTIVE ORDER. NO. 10834.
PROPORTIONS AND SIZES OF FLAGS AND POSITION OF STARS

Ex. Ord. No. 10834, Aug. 21, 1959, 24 F.R. 6865, provided:

WHEREAS the State of Hawaii has this day been admitted into the Union; and

WHEREAS section 2 of title 4 of the United States Code provides as follows: ''On the admission of a new State into the Union one star shall be added to the union of the flag; and such addition
shall take effect on the fourth day of July then next succeeding such admission.''; and

WHEREAS the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949 (63 Stat. 377), as amended (see Short Title note under section 471 of Title 40, Public Buildings, Property, and Works) authorizes the President to prescribe policies and directives governing the procurement and utilization of property by executive agencies; and

WHEREAS the interests of the Government require that orderly and reasonable provision be made for various matters pertaining to the flag and that appropriate regulations governing the procurement and utilization of national flags and union jacks by executive agencies be prescribed:

NOW, THEREFORE, by virtue of the authority vested in me as President of the United States and as Commander in Chief of the armed forces of the United States, and the Federal Property and Administrative Services Act of 1949, as amended (see Short Title note under section 471 of Title 40, Public Buildings, Property, and Works), it is hereby ordered as follows:

PART I - DESIGN OF THE FLAG

Section 1. The flag of the United States shall have thirteen horizontal stripes, alternate red and white, and a union consisting of white stars on a field of blue.

Sec. 2. The positions of the stars in the union of the flag and in the union jack shall be as indicated on the attachment to this order, which is hereby made a part of this order.

Sec. 3. The dimensions of the constituent parts of the flag shall conform to the proportions set forth in the attachment referred to in section 2 of this order.

PART II - REGULATIONS GOVERNING EXECUTIVE AGENCIES

Sec. 21. The following sizes of flags are authorized for executive agencies:

Dimensions of Flag Size Hoist (width)
Feet
 Fly (length)
Feet
1 20.00 38.00
2 10.00 19.00
3 8.95 17.00
4 7.00 11.00
5 5.00 9.50
6 4.33 5.50
7 3.50 6.65
8 3.00 4.00
9 3.00 5.70
10 2.37 4.50
11 1.32 2.50

Sec. 22. Flags manufactured or purchased for the use of executive agencies:

  1. Shall conform to the provisions of Part I of this order, except as may be otherwise authorized pursuant to the provisions of section 24, or except as otherwise authorized by the provisions of section 21, of this order.
  2. Shall conform to the provisions of section 21 of this order, except as may be otherwise authorized pursuant to the provisions of section 24 of this order.

Sec. 23. The exterior dimensions of each union jack manufactured or purchased for executive agencies shall equal the respective exterior dimensions of the union of a flag of a size authorized by or pursuant to this order. The size of the union jack flown with the national flag shall be the same as the size of the union of that national flag.

Sec. 24. (a) The Secretary of Defense in respect of procurement for the Department of Defense (including military colors) and the Administrator of General Services in respect of procurement for executive agencies other than the Department of Defense may, for cause which the Secretary or the Administrator, as the case may be, deems sufficient, make necessary minor adjustments in one or more of the dimensions or proportionate dimensions prescribed by this order, or authorize proportions or sizes other than those prescribed by section 3 or section 21 of this order.

(b) So far as practicable, (1) the actions of the Secretary of Defense under the provisions of section 24(a) of this order, as they relate to the various organizational elements of the Department of Defense, shall be coordinated, and (2) the Secretary and the Administrator shall mutually coordinate their actions under that section.

Sec. 25. Subject to such limited exceptions as the Secretary of Defense in respect of the Department of Defense, and the Administrator of General Services in respect of executive agencies other than the Department of Defense, may approve, all national flags and union jacks now in the possession of executive agencies, or hereafter acquired by executive agencies under contracts awarded prior to the date of this order, including those so possessed or so acquired by the General Services Administration, for distribution to other agencies, shall be utilized until unserviceable.

PART III - GENERAL PROVISIONS

Sec. 31. The flag prescribed by Executive Order No. 10798 of January 3, 1959, shall be the official flag of the United States until July 4, 1960, and on that date the flag prescribed by Part I of this order shall become the official flag of the United States; but this section shall neither derogate from section 24 or section 25 of this order nor preclude the procurement, for executive agencies, of flags provided for by or pursuant to this order at any time after the date of this order.

Sec. 32. As used in this order, the term ''executive agencies'' means the executive departments and independent establishments in the executive branch of the Government, including wholly-owned Government corporations.

Sec. 33. Executive Order No. 10798 of January 3, 1959, is hereby revoked.

Dwight D. Eisenhower.

-------------------------------------

Standard proportions

Hoist (width) of flag 1.0 A
Fly (length) of flag 1.9 B
Hoist (width) of Union 0.5385(7/13) C
Fly (length) of Union 0.76 D
0.054 E
0.054 F
0.063 G
0.063 H
Diameter of star 0.0616 K
Width of stripe 0.0769(1/13) L
--------------------------------------

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 5 of this title.

Sec. 2. Same; additional stars

Statute

On the admission of a new State into the Union one star shall be added to the union of the flag; and such addition shall take effect on the fourth day of July then next succeeding such admission.

Source

(July 30, 1947, ch. 389, 61 Stat. 642.)

Section Referred to in Other Sections

This section is referred to in section 5 of this title.

Sec. 3. Use of flag for advertising purposes; mutilation of flag

Statute

Any person who, within the District of Columbia, in any manner, for exhibition or display, shall place or cause to be placed any word, figure, mark, picture, design, drawing, or any advertisement of any nature upon any flag, standard, colors, or ensign of the United States of America; or shall expose or cause to be exposed to public view any such flag, standard, colors, or ensign upon which shall have been printed, painted, or otherwise placed, or to which shall be attached, appended, affixed, or annexed any word, figure, mark, picture, design, or drawing, or any advertisement of any nature; or who, within the District of Columbia, shall manufacture, sell, expose for sale, or to public view, or give away or have in possession for sale, or to be given away or for use for any purpose, any article or substance being an article of merchandise, or a receptacle for merchandise or article or thing for carrying or transporting merchandise, upon which shall have been printed, painted, attached, or otherwise placed a representation of any such flag, standard, colors, or ensign, to advertise, call attention to, decorate, mark, or distinguish the article or substance on which so placed shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and shall be punished by a fine not exceeding $100 or by imprisonment for not more than thirty days, or both, in the discretion of the court.  The words ''flag, standard, colors, or ensign'', as used herein, shall include any flag, standard, colors, ensign, or any picture or representation of either, or of any part or parts of either, made of any substance or represented on any substance, of any size evidently purporting to be either of said flag, standard, colors, or ensign of the United States of America or a picture or a representation of either, upon which shall be shown the colors, the stars and the stripes, in any number of either thereof, or of any part or parts of either, by which the average person seeing the same without deliberation may believe the same to represent the flag, colors, standard, or ensign of the United States of America.

Source

(July 30, 1947, ch. 389, 61 Stat. 642; Pub. L. 90-381, Sec. 3, July 5, 1968, 82 Stat. 291.)

Amendments

1968 - Pub. L. 90-381 struck out ''; or who, within the District of Columbia, shall publicly mutilate, deface, defile or defy, trample upon, or cast contempt, either by word or act, upon any such flag, standard, colors, or ensign,'' after ''substance on which so placed''.

Cross References

Penalty for desecration of the flag, see section 700 of Title 18, Crimes and Criminal Procedure.

Police uniforms to display U.S. flag emblem or colors, see section 210a of Title 40, Public Buildings, Property, and Works.

Sec. 4. Pledge of allegiance to the flag; manner of delivery

Statute

The Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag, ''I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.'', should be rendered by standing at attention facing the flag with the right hand over the heart. When not in uniform men should remove their headdress with their right hand and hold it at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart.

Persons in uniform should remain silent, face the flag, and render the military salute.

Source

(Added Pub. L. 105-225, Sec. 2(a), Aug. 12, 1998, 112 Stat. 1494.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised Section Source (U.S. Code) Source (Statutes at Large)
4 36:172 June 22, 1942 ch. 435. Sec. 7 56 Stat. 380
    Dec. 22, 1942 ch. 806. Sec.7 56 Stat. 1077
    Dec. 28, 1945 ch.607 59 Stat. 668
    June 14, 1954 ch. 297 68 Stat. 249
    July 7, 1976 Pub.L. 94-344, (19) 90 Stat. 813

Sec. 5. Display and use of flag by civilians; codification of rules and customs; definition

Statute

The following codification of existing rules and customs pertaining to the display and use of the flag of the United States of America is established for the use of such civilians or civilian groups or organizations as may not be required to conform with regulations promulgated by one or more executive departments of the Government of the United States. The flag of the United States for the purpose of this chapter shall be defined according to sections 1 and 2 of this title and Executive Order 10834 issued pursuant thereto.

Source

(Added Pub. L. 105-225, Sec. 2(a), Aug. 12, 1998, 112 Stat. 1494.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised Section Source (U.S. Code) Source (Statutes at Large)
5 36:173 June 22, 1942 ch. 435. Sec. 1 56 Stat. 377
    Dec. 22, 1942 ch. 806. Sec.1 56 Stat. 1074
    July 7, 1976 Pub.L. 94-344, (1) 90 Stat. 810

References in Text

Executive Order 10834, referred to in text, is set out as a note under section 1 of this title.

Sec. 6. Time and occasions for display

Statute

  1. It is the universal custom to display the flag only from sunrise to sunset on buildings and on stationary flagstaffs in the open. However, when a patriotic effect is desired, the flag may be displayed 24 hours a day if properly illuminated during the hours of darkness.
  2. The flag should be hoisted briskly and lowered ceremoniously.
  3. The flag should not be displayed on days when the weather is inclement, except when an all weather flag is displayed.
  4. The flag should be displayed on all days, especially on New Year's Day, January 1; Inauguration Day, January 20; Lincoln's Birthday, February 12; Washington's Birthday, third Monday in February; Easter Sunday (variable); Mother's Day, second Sunday in May; Armed Forces Day, third Saturday in May; Memorial Day (half-staff until noon), the last Monday in May; Flag Day, June 14; Independence Day, July 4; Labor Day, first Monday in September; Constitution Day, September 17; Columbus Day, second Monday in October; Navy Day, October 27; Veterans Day, November 11; Thanksgiving Day, fourth Thursday in November; Christmas Day, December 25; and such other days as may be proclaimed by the President of the United States; the birthdays of States (date of admission); and on State holidays.
  5. The flag should be displayed daily on or near the main administration building of every public institution.
  6. The flag should be displayed in or near every polling place on election days.
  7. The flag should be displayed during school days in or near every schoolhouse.

Source

(Added Pub. L. 105-225, Sec. 2(a), Aug. 12, 1998, 112 Stat. 1494.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised Section Source (U.S. Code) Source (Statutes at Large)
6 36:174 June 22, 1942 ch. 435. Sec. 2 56 Stat. 378
    Dec. 22, 1942 ch. 806. Sec.2 56 Stat. 1074
    July 7, 1976 Pub.L. 94-344, (2) 90 Stat. 810

In subsection (d), the words ''Veterans Day'' are substituted for 'Armistice Day'' because of the Act of June 1, 1954 (ch. 250, 68 Stat. 168).

Sec. 7. Position and manner of display

Statute

The flag, when carried in a procession with another flag or flags, should be either on the marching right; that is, the flag's own right, or, if there is a line of other flags, in front of the center of that line.

  1. The flag should not be displayed on a float in a parade except from a staff, or as provided in subsection (i) of this section.
  2. The flag should not be draped over the hood, top, sides, or back of a vehicle or of a railroad train or a boat. When the flag is displayed on a motorcar, the staff shall be fixed firmly to the chassis or clamped to the right fender.
  3. No other flag or pennant should be placed above or, if on the same level, to the right of the flag of the United States of America, except during church services conducted by naval chaplains at sea, when the church pennant may be flown above the flag during church services for the personnel of the Navy. No person shall display the flag of the United Nations or any other national or international flag equal, above, or in a position of superior prominence or honor to, or in place of, the flag of the United States at any place within the United States or any Territory or possession thereof: Provided, That nothing in this section shall make unlawful the continuance of the practice heretofore followed of displaying the flag of the United Nations in a position of superior prominence or honor, and other national flags in positions of equal prominence or honor, with that of the flag of the United States at the headquarters of the United Nations.
  4. The flag of the United States of America, when it is displayed with another flag against a wall from crossed staffs, should be on the right, the flag's own right, and its staff should be in front of the staff of the other flag.
  5. The flag of the United States of America should be at the center and at the highest point of the group when a number of flags of States or localities or pennants of societies are grouped and displayed from staffs.
  6. When flags of States, cities, or localities, or pennants of societies are flown on the same halyard with the flag of the United States, the latter should always be at the peak. When the flags are flown from adjacent staffs, the flag of the United States should be hoisted first and lowered last. No such flag or pennant may be placed above the flag of the United States or to the United States flag's right.
  7. When flags of two or more nations are displayed, they are to be flown from separate staffs of the same height. The flags should be of approximately equal size. International usage forbids the display of the flag of one nation above that of another nation in time of peace.
  8. When the flag of the United States is displayed from a staff projecting horizontally or at an angle from the window sill, balcony, or front of a building, the union of the flag should be placed at the peak of the staff unless the flag is at half-staff. When the flag is suspended over a sidewalk from a rope extending from a house to a pole at the edge of the sidewalk, the flag should be hoisted out, union first, from the building.
  9. When displayed either horizontally or vertically against a wall, the union should be uppermost and to the flag's own right, that is, to the observer's left. When displayed in a window, the flag should be displayed in the same way, with the union or blue field to the left of the observer in the street.
  10. When the flag is displayed over the middle of the street, it 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.
  11. When used on a speaker's platform, the flag, if displayed flat, should be displayed above and behind the speaker. When displayed from a staff in a church or public auditorium, the flag of the United States of America should hold the position of superior prominence, in advance of the audience, and in the position of honor at the clergyman's or speaker's right as he faces the audience. Any other flag so displayed should be placed on the left of the clergyman or speaker or to the right of the audience.
  12. The flag should form a distinctive feature of the ceremony of unveiling a statue or monument, but it should never be used as the covering for the statue or monument.
  13. The flag, when flown at half-staff, should be first hoisted to the peak for an instant and then lowered to the half-staff position. The flag should be again raised to the peak before it is lowered for the day. On Memorial Day the flag should be displayed at half-staff until noon only, then raised to the top of the staff. By order of the President, the flag shall be flown at half-staff upon the death of principal figures of the United States Government and the Governor of a State, territory, or possession, as a mark of respect to their memory. In the event of the death of other officials or foreign dignitaries, the flag is to be displayed at half-staff according to Presidential instructions or orders, or in accordance with recognized customs or practices not inconsistent with law. In the event of the death of a present or former official of the government of any State, territory, or possession of the United States, the Governor of that State, territory, or possession may proclaim that the National flag shall be flown at half-staff. The flag shall be flown at half-staff 30 days from the death of the President or a former President; 10 days from the day of death of the Vice President, the Chief Justice or a retired Chief Justice of the United States, or the Speaker of the House of Representatives; from the day of death until interment of an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, a Secretary of an executive or military department, a former Vice President, or the Governor of a State, territory, or possession; and on the day of death and the following day for a Member of Congress. The flag shall be flown at half-staff on Peace Officers Memorial Day, unless that day is also Armed Forces Day. As used in this subsection -
    1. the term ''half-staff'' means the position of the flag when it is one-half the distance between the top and bottom of the staff;
    2. the term ''executive or military department'' means any agency listed under sections 101 and 102 of title 5, United States Code; and
    3. the term ''Member of Congress'' means a Senator, a Representative, a Delegate, or the Resident Commissioner from Puerto Rico.
  14. When the flag is used to cover a casket, it should be so placed that the union is at the head and over the left shoulder. The flag should not be lowered into the grave or allowed to touch the ground.
  15. When the flag is suspended across a corridor or lobby in a building with only one main entrance, it should be suspended vertically with the union of the flag to the observer's left upon  entering. If the building has more than one main entrance, the flag should be suspended vertically near the center of the corridor or lobby with the union to the north, when entrances are to the east and west or to the east when entrances are to the north and south. If there are entrances in more than two directions, the union should be to the east.

Source

(Added Pub. L. 105-225, Sec. 2(a), Aug. 12, 1998, 112 Stat. 1495.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised Section Source (U.S. Code) Source (Statutes at Large)
7 36:175 June 22, 1942 ch. 435. Sec. 3 56 Stat. 378
    Dec. 22, 1942 ch. 806. Sec.3 56 Stat. 1075
    July 9, 1953 ch. 183 67 Stat. 142
    July 7, 1976 Pub.L. 94-344, (6)-(11) 90 Stat. 811
    Sept. 13, 1994 Pub. L. 103-322,
title XXXII,
Sec. 320922(b)
108 Stat. 2131

Executive Proclamations

PROC. NO. 3044. DISPLAY OF FLAG AT HALF-STAFF UPON DEATH OF CERTAIN OFFICIALS AND FORMER OFFICIALS

Proc. No. 3044, Mar. 1, 1954, 19 F.R. 1235, as amended by Proc. No. 3948, Dec. 12, 1969, 34 F.R. 19699, provided:

WHEREAS it is appropriate that the flag of the United States of America be flown at half-staff on Federal buildings, grounds, and facilities upon the death of principal officials and former officials of the Government of the United States and the Governors of the States, Territories, and possessions of the United States as a mark of respect to their memory; and

WHEREAS it is desirable that rules be prescribed for the uniform observance of this mark of respect by all executive departments and agencies of the Government, and as a guide to the people of the Nation generally on such occasions:

NOW, THEREFORE, I, DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER, President of the United States of America and Commander in Chief of the armed forces of the United States, do hereby prescribe and proclaim the following rules with respect to the display of the flag of the United States of America at half-staff upon the death of the officials hereinafter designated:

  1. The flag of the United States shall be flown at half-staff on all buildings, grounds, and naval vessels of the Federal Government in the District of Columbia and throughout the United States and its Territories and possessions for the period indicated upon the death of any of the following-designated officials or former officials of the United States:
    1. The President or a former President: for thirty days from the day of death. The flag shall also be flown at half-staff for such period at all United States embassies, legations, and other facilities abroad, including all military facilities and naval vessels and stations.
    2. The Vice President, the Chief Justice or a retired Chief Justice of the United States, or the Speaker of the House of Representatives: for ten days from the day of death.
    3. An Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, a member of the Cabinet, a former Vice President, the President pro tempore of the Senate, the Majority Leader of the Senate, the Minority Leader of the Senate, the Majority Leader of the House of Representatives, or the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives: from the day of death until interment.
  2. The flag of the United States shall be flown at half-staff on all buildings, grounds, and naval vessels of the Federal Government in the metropolitan area of the District of Columbia on the day of death and on the following day upon the death of a United States Senator, Representative, Territorial Delegate, or the Resident Commissioner from the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and it shall also be flown at half-staff on all buildings, grounds, and naval vessels of the Federal Government in the State, Congressional District, Territory, or Commonwealth of such Senator, Representative, Delegate, or Commissioner, respectively, from the day of death until interment.
  3. The flag of the United States shall be flown at half-staff on all buildings and grounds of the Federal Government in a State, Territory, or possession of the United States upon the death of the Governor of such State, Territory, or possession from the day of death until interment.
  4. In the event of the death of other officials, former officials, or foreign dignitaries, the flag of the United States shall be displayed at half-staff in accordance with such orders or instructions as may be issued by or at the direction of the President, or in accordance with recognized customs or practices not inconsistent with law.
  5. The heads of the several departments and agencies of the Government may direct that the flag of the United States be flown at half-staff on buildings, grounds, or naval vessels under their jurisdiction on occasions other than those specified herein which they consider proper, and that suitable military honors be rendered as appropriate.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the United States of America to be affixed.

DONE at the City of Washington this 1st day of March in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and fifty-four, and of the Independence of the United States of America the one hundred and seventy-eighth.

Dwight D. Eisenhower.

Sec. 8. Respect for flag

Statute

No disrespect should be shown to the flag of the United States of America; the flag should not be dipped to any person or thing. Regimental colors, State flags, and organization or institutional flags are to be dipped as a mark of honor.

  1. The flag should never be displayed with the union down, except as a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property.
  2. The flag should never touch anything beneath it, such as the ground, the floor, water, or merchandise.
  3. The flag should never be carried flat or horizontally, but always aloft and free.
  4. The flag should never be used as wearing apparel, bedding, or drapery. It should never be festooned, drawn back, nor up, in folds, but always allowed to fall free. Bunting of blue, white, and red, always arranged with the blue above, the white in the middle, and the red below, should be used for covering a speaker's desk, draping the front of the platform, and for decoration in general.
  5. The flag should never be fastened, displayed, used, or stored in such a manner as to permit it to be easily torn, soiled, or damaged in any way.
  6. The flag should never be used as a covering for a ceiling.
  7. The flag should never have placed upon it, nor on any part of it, nor attached to it any mark, insignia, letter, word, figure, design, picture, or drawing of any nature.
  8. The flag should never be used as a receptacle for receiving, holding, carrying, or delivering anything.
  9. The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever. It should not be embroidered on such articles as cushions or handkerchiefs and the like, printed or otherwise impressed on paper napkins or boxes or anything that is designed for temporary use and discard. Advertising signs should not be fastened to a staff or halyard from which the flag is flown.
  10. No part of the flag should ever be used as a costume or athletic uniform. However, a flag patch may be affixed to the uniform of military personnel, firemen, policemen, and members of patriotic organizations. The flag represents a living country and is itself considered a living thing. Therefore, the lapel flag pin being a replica, should be worn on the left lapel near the heart.
  11. The flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.

Source

(Added Pub. L. 105-225, Sec. 2(a), Aug. 12, 1998, 112 Stat. 1497.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised Section Source (U.S. Code) Source (Statutes at Large)
8 36:176 June 22, 1942 ch. 435. Sec. 4 56 Stat. 379
    Dec. 22, 1942 ch. 806. Sec.4 56 Stat. 1076
    July 7, 1976 Pub.L. 94-344, (12)-(16) 90 Stat. 812

Sec. 9. Conduct during hoisting, lowering or passing of flag

Statute

During the ceremony of hoisting or lowering the flag or when the flag is passing in a parade or in review, all persons present in uniform should render the military salute. Members of the Armed Forces and veterans who are present but not in uniform may render the military salute. All other persons present should face the flag and stand at attention with their right hand over the heart, or if applicable, remove their headdress with their right hand and hold it at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart. Citizens of other countries present should stand at attention. All such conduct toward the flag in a moving column should be rendered at the moment the flag passes.

Source

(http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/4/usc_sec_04_00000009----000-.html)

Historical and Revision Notes

This section of the U.S. Flag Code was modified in 2008 to allow veterans not in uniform to render a military salute.

Sec. 10. Modification of rules and customs by President

Statute

Any rule or custom pertaining to the display of the flag of the United States of America, set forth herein, may be altered, modified, or repealed, or additional rules with respect thereto may be prescribed, by the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of the United States, whenever he deems it to be appropriate or desirable; and any such alteration or additional rule shall be set forth in a proclamation.

Source

(Added Pub. L. 105-225, Sec. 2(a), Aug. 12, 1998, 112 Stat. 1498.)

Historical and Revision Notes

Revised Section Source (U.S. Code) Source (Statutes at Large)
10 36:178 June 22, 1942 ch. 435. Sec. 8 56 Stat. 380
    Dec. 22, 1942 ch. 806. Sec.8 56 Stat. 1077
    July 7, 1976 Pub.L. 94-344, (20) 90 Stat. 813

References in Text

Herein, referred to in text, means sections 4 to 10 of this title.

Executive Proclamations

PROC. NO. 2605. THE FLAG OF THE UNITED STATES

Proc. No. 2605, Feb. 18, 1944, 9 F.R. 1957, 58 Stat. 1126, provided:

The flag of the United States of America is universally representative of the principles of the justice, liberty, and democracy enjoyed by the people of the United States; and People all over the world recognize the flag of the United States as symbolic of the United States; and

The effective prosecution of the war requires a proper understanding by the people of other countries of the material assistance being given by the Government of the United States:

NOW, THEREFORE, by virtue of the power vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, particularly by the Joint Resolution approved June 22, 1942, as amended by the Joint Resolution approved December 22, 1942 (now sections 4 to 10 of this title), as President and Commander in Chief, it is hereby proclaimed as follows:

  1. The use of the flag of the United States or any representation thereof, if approved by the Foreign Economic Administration, on labels, packages, cartons, cases, or other containers for articles or products of the United States intended for export as lend-lease aid, as relief and rehabilitation aid, or as emergency supplies for the Territories and possessions of the United States, or similar purposes, shall be considered a proper use of the flag of the United States and consistent with the honor and respect due to the flag.
  2. If any article or product so labelled, packaged or otherwise bearing the flag of the United States or any representation thereof, as provided for in section 1, should, by force of circumstances, be diverted to the ordinary channels of domestic trade, no person shall be considered as violating the rules and customs pertaining to the display of the flag of the United States, as set forth in the Joint Resolution approved June 22, 1942, as amended by the Joint Resolution approved December 22, 1942 (U.S.C., Supp. II, title 36, secs. 171-178) (now sections 4 to 10 of this title) for possessing, transporting, displaying, selling or otherwise transferring any such article or product solely because the label, package, carton, case, or other container bears the flag of the United States or any representation thereof.

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