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The Grand Union Flag 1775-77
The Grand Union flag, also known as the Continental colors and the First Navy Ensign, was the first official flag of the United States. It was first hoisted by lieutenant John Paul Jones on the USS Alfred on Dec 3, 1775. The Flag Act of 1777 authorized the creation of the new flag with 13 stars on a blue background.
"Resolved, That the flag of the thirteen United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation." The Flag Act of 1777
These are the official flags of the United States, known as the Naval Ensigns. There were also the different designs with the circles and other patterns of stars, flown by the individual states, but these are the official, Congressionally-authorized versions. Click on the thumbnail to see a larger image.