As the home of the Star-Spangled Banner, the flag that inspired the national anthem, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History has an important role in exploring the history and meaning of our nation’s flag. To this end, the museum will host its annual Flag Day Family Festival on June 11, from 12-4 p.m.
EventsMeet the Author Author Marc Leepson will sign his book, “Flag: An American Biography,” which traces the history of the American flag. 1-4 p.m., George Washington Statue, 2nd floor, west Music Members of the Ft. McHenry Guard will participate in a musical flag raising ceremony. Noon, Constitution Lawn The Fifes and Drums of York Town will perform patriotic music. 1, 2 & 3 p.m., Flag Hall, 2ndFloor Center Living History Living history performer “Francis Scott Key” will recount the story of the flag that inspired the national anthem. 1:30 & 3:30 p.m., “Preserving the Star-Spangled Banner,” exhibition entrance, 2nd floor west Hands-on Activities Flag-folding demonstrations with the Ft. McHenry Guard 12:30, 1:30, 2:30 & 3:30 p.m., Mall Lawn Experiment with textile conservation techniques at the Hands on Science Center to gain taste of what’s being with the Star-Spangled Banner. Free timed tickets are available at the Hands on Science Center entrance. Noon-4 p.m., Hands on Science Center, 1st floor, west Make your own flag Noon-4 p.m., George Washington Statue, 2nd floor, west Design a family flag Noon-4 p.m., George Washington Statue, 2nd floor, west Exhibition Tours “Preserving the Star-Spangled Banner: The Flag that Inspired the National Anthem” 12:30 & 2:30 p.m., “Preserving the Star-Spangled Banner,” entrance, 2nd floor west Hunt for flag history self-guided tour Noon-4 p.m., 2nd floor, west
Ongoing ExhibitionsPreserving the Star-Spangled Banner: The Flag that Inspired the National Anthem The Star-Spangled Banner is undergoing a multi-year preservation treatment. Specially designed floor-to-ceiling windows allow the public to view the flag in the lab. Visitors can learn about the conservation efforts and about the flag’s history in the companion exhibition. Pentagon Flag On display in Flag Hall is the garrison flag that draped the west wall of the Pentagon for the month following the 2001 terrorist attacks. On Sept.12, soldiers and firefighters working the recovery effort at the Pentagon unfurled the giant American flag to greet President George W. Bush on his visit to survey the damage. On Oct. 11, 2001 the flag was lowered and folded with full military honors. It now hangs in front of the museum’s second floor entrance in the space where the original Star-Spangled Banner once hung. The Price of Freedom: Americans at War “The Price of Freedom: Americans at War,” is an 18,000-square-foot exhibition surveying the history of the U.S. military from the Colonial era to the present, exploring ways that wars have been defining episodes in American History. The exhibition’s artifacts, graphic images and interactive stations tell stories of how Americans have fought to establish the nation’s independence, shape its values of freedom and opportunity, and define its role in world affairs. Among the objects included in the exhibition: one of the few Revolutionary War uniforms in existence; furniture used by Gen. Ulysses S. Grant and Robert E. Lee during the surrender ceremony at Appomattox Court House; a restored Huey Helicopter, an icon of the Vietnam War, that will be the largest object on display; and the uniform worn by Colin Powell during Operation Desert Storm. The exhibition also includes the first Confederate national flag, the United States national 34-star flag and the Eagle in Canton flag, reputed to have been used in the Indian Wars. The National Museum of American History traces American heritage through exhibitions of social, cultural, scientific and technological history. The museum is located at 14th Street and Constitution Avenue, N.W., and is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (special summer hours: the museum is open until 6:30 p.m. until Sept.5). For more information, visit the museum’s Web site at https://americanhistory.si.edu or call (202) 633-1000 or 357-1729 (TTY).
Media only:Valeska Hilbig/ Annie Tsang (202) 633-3129