Size Matters: How Big Was the First American Flag?

Shortly after my arrival this afternoon we left the Hyatt and crossed through Inner Harbor, making our way to the Star-Spangled Banner Flag House.

Although a part of me felt hesitant about leaving such an incredible roomsee video on Facebook – the weather was imitating spring and it felt like a different time of year, the flowers bright in the beds that sit around the harbor, yellow and purple and white.

Mary Pickersgill sewed the first flag in 1813 under government contract – they told her they wanted it large enough so the British “couldn’t miss it” as they approached the city of Baltimore and Fort McHenry (which I will see tomorrow).

The flag ended up being 30 by 42 feet, which I didn’t really appreciate until I stood in front of the full-size glass replica. Each stripe is 2-foot in width.

I’ve already learned a lot about the War of 1812, but I’m going to withhold comment until after the next two days. There’s still much perspective to be gained, and I haven’t quite wrapped my head around it yet.

Although I am pretty sure Mary’s fingers fell off after this project:

30 by 42 feet replica.
Yours truly in front of the replica.
Making history fun.


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