In 1885, a schoolteacher at a Wisconsin Public School arranged for his pupils to observe June 14, the 108th anniversary of the official adoption of the Stars and Stripes, as “Flag Birthday.”

After being inspired by numerous small movements of recognition of "Old Glory" across the nation, Flag Day was officially established by President Woodrow Wilson in 1916.

While Flag Day was celebrated in various communities for years after Wilson's proclamation, it was not until Aug. 3, 1949, that President Truman signed an Act of Congress designating June 14 of each year as National Flag Day.

In keeping with the national tradition, the Rushville Elks will host their annual Flag Day ceremony at 7 p.m. Wednesday in the Elks ballroom.

This year's featured speaker will be Rushville Mayor Bob Bridges.

"I know that all who attend will find the ceremony extremely moving and patriotic, as well as informative," Mark Sloan, Exalted Ruler of the Rushville Elks, said.

Boy Scouts from Arlington Troop #28 will serve as flag bearers. The troop will be marching in with seven different flags that have flown over United States troops going back to the Revolutionary War.

The Elks were responsible for the establishment of a June 14 Flag Day in 1908 at the Grand Lodge held that year in Dallas, Texas. The holiday was made official by Harry Truman, who was an Elk himself.

The Elks will be serving dinner at 5 p.m. in the dining room and the public is invited to attend.

"Please, come downtown, have a great meal, and then join us in honoring our star-spangled banner in this very special celebration," Sloan said.

The Elks Lodge is located at 223 E. Third Street, Rushville. If you have any questions or would care to make dinner reservations call (765) 938-1307.

Rushville Republican staff writer Elizabeth Gist can be contacted at (765) 932-2222 or via e-mail at To add a comment visit our Website at