America has so many flags with so many different stars. There's the current flag with 50 stars, the Lone Star from Texas, flags with 48 stars, and the Betsy Ross flag. Since the latter is sometimes mistakenly confused with the Confederate flag in our store when showcasing our woven Betsy blanket, perhaps we should tell its legendary story.
From the narratives of American history, she's inseparable: Betsy Ross. In May 1776, in her house in Philadelphia, the leader of the Continental Army, George Washington, the wealthiest man in the colonies, Robert Morris, and her distant uncle, George Ross, gathered. Betsy Ross was asked to sew the first American flag. Outside, the War of Independence raged on. According to legend, the Americans, previously disoriented in the battles, saw their first flag (and not the English one), gained new courage, and naturally won their fights. As I said, according to the legend.
On July 4, 1776, the Continental Congress, the representative body of the 13 North American states (Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Georgia, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland, South Carolina, New Hampshire, Virginia, New York, North Carolina, and Rhode Island), adopted the Declaration of Independence, proclaiming the separation from England and the sovereignty of the "United States of America."
Almost a year later, on June 14, 1777, the Continental Congress decided: The flag of the United States would have thirteen alternating red and white stripes and thirteen white stars on a blue background, representing the new states ("Betsy Ross flag"). Throughout history, a new star was added for each additional state. However, the number of stripes was fixed in 1818, as a reminder of the first thirteen states. The current American flag with 50 stars has been in use since Hawaii's admission in 1959.
Betsy Ross's house, which she rented from 1773 to 1786, can still be visited today. Alongside her living spaces, her own sewing workshop was located in the basement. For those who won't be visiting historic Philadelphia in the foreseeable future, there's a virtual tour available online: http://www.ushistory.org/betsy/house/intro.html