- Paperback: 352 pages
- Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; Reprint edition (May 30, 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0312323093
- ISBN-13: 978-0312323097
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 15 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #204,534 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Flag: An American Biography Paperback – May 30, 2006
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"Comprehensive, dispassionate chronicle of the potent banner that stirs up passions of every stripe." - Kirkus Reviews
About the Author
Marc Leepson has written for many publications, among them The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Smithsonian. He is the author of five books, including Saving Monticello, and lives in Middleburg, Virginia.
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In Flag: An American Biography, Marc Leepson explores the history of the U.S. flag and the role it has played in American society. He first explores its rather murky origins in the Flag Resolution of 1777. The exact reasoning of why the colors were chosen, or even the overall design of the flag, are not really known. He also takes an entire chapter to debunk the famous Betsy Ross story.
From its first creation to the Civil War, the flag was not really the national symbol it was today. During that period, it mostly used by the military and flown from government buildings. When the Civil War broke out, the popularity of the flag exploded and it became a symbol of unity against the Confederacy in the North. Even after the war ended, anger from the South did not extend to the flag itself.
Again, during both world wars, the flag became a prominent symbol of unity among Americans in the war effort.
That sentiment changed during the 1960s and 70s during the Vietnam War. Some saw the flag differently. While those that supported the war flew flags, some of those that opposed the war saw the flag as a symbol of it and chose instead to burn or desecrate it.
After the September 11 terrorist attacks, the flag once again became the symbol of national unity. Flag sales shot through the roof in the aftermath and flags (and similar designs) were to be found on every type of product from candy to underwear.
All in all, this was a pretty interesting overview of the American flag. The history of its own design and the place it has had in society over the years. A good read for those interested in American history.
He handles the controversial in a very understandable way (dare I say "Fair and Balanced", but I digress)...While nothing can gas up a crowd a veterans faster than someone abusing our Flag, Mr. Leepson even handles the Flag burning issue with an excellent review of court review to date...
For the historians in the crowd, he has put to rest the alot of the fiction about the developement of the first flag ('a.k.a. the Betsy Ross Flag')...for one who has read a lot about our First President, George Washington, he has 'Weemed' out the falsehoods of the original developement.
He is the author of many books, but his latest on the Marquis LaFayette is also a wonderful read...see my review of that book!
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In his latest work of popular historiography, Marc Leepson - author of Saving Monticello - takes on the...Read more