History is the best incentive to make men love their country; it encourages that patriotism which never falters, even at the cannon's mouth. The sight of a flag or the music of a band merely enthuses as long as one is in sight or the other can be heard; but history and its knowledge are lasting and a source of pride. So, therefore, let it be true in all its details, no matter who may fall from the high pedestals upon which they have been placed by vain-glorious descendants.
etc., that from and after the fourth day of July next the flag of the United States be thirteen stripes alternate red and white; that the union have twenty stars white in a blue field.
"Sec. 2. And be it further enacted that, on the admission of every new State into the Union, one star be added to the union of the flag; and that such addition shall take effect on the fourth of July next succeeding such admission.
"Approved April 4, 1818."
The use of stars by the Colonies on their flags was first suggested by a little piece of poetry in a newspaper called the "Massachusetts Spy," published in Boston on March the 10th, 1774. It was as follows:
"A ray of bright glory Now beams from afar; The American Ensign Now sparkles a star."
[Illustration: Figs. 6, 7, 10 and 11]
This piece of poetry was the cause of a flag being made in 1775 by a patriotic vessel owner of Massachusetts having thirteen white stars on it in a blue union, the body of the flag being white, with an anchor
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