Sometimes, you’re just in the right place at the right time. I got up from my desk this morning to go see the progress in the renovation of the cafeteria, when I encountered a colleague en route to witness the unrolling of the Star-Spangled Banner. A look at the cafeteria’s new tile floor would have to wait—I serendipitously had the opportunity to be part of history! In a few moments there I was, in the new gallery, watching our conservators (in protective suits) carefully and slowly unrolling the flag onto its brand new table.
Even though the flag was covered and not all that visible, it was awesome. In order to protect the flag during its move from the old lab into the new chamber, and from construction dust, it had been covered up. All we could see what a large white sheet. A major milestone nonetheless!
This was the first chance anyone has had to “see” the flag in its new state-of-the-art chamber. Years of study, conservation, planning, and construction are transitioning into a new era for the Star-Spangled Banner. We finally are able to see what the the flag will look like in its new permanent gallery, giving us the chance to truly appreciate this important symbol of our country.
Kathy Sklar is the museum's business program manager.