U.S. Naval Academy Opens, 1845
On October 10, we commemorate the opening of the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland.
Origins of the Naval Academy
The idea of a dedicated naval academy in the United States was first proposed by Thomas Jefferson in 1801, but it wasn't until 1845 that the U.S. Naval Academy was officially established.
On October 10, 1845, Secretary of the Navy George Bancroft (who would later become the Secretary of the Navy under President James K. Polk) issued orders to establish the United States Naval School in Annapolis, Maryland on the property, dubiously, of the land-locked former U.S. Army post, Fort Severn.
In 1850, after a few relocations, the Naval School settled into its current location at the confluence of the Severn River and Chesapeake Bay. The early years were marked by several challenges, including financial difficulties and a limited curriculum...
Ex Scientia Tridens — Through Knowledge, Sea Power
The school's initial purpose was to provide a practical and theoretical education to naval officers, focusing on navigation, mathematics, and mechanical engineering. Of course, modernization and advancements over the past 175+ years have led to massive expansion of the curriculum and an ever-heightening set of expectations on applicants for admission.
In the modern era, the Naval Academy has evolved to offer diverse academic programs, including multi-disciplinary engineering, science, and the humanities. The institution continues to emphasize leadership development, physical fitness, and character building.
Graduates of the Naval Academy in Annapolis have played pivotal roles in military conflicts and societal advancements alike. Notable alumni include Admirals Chester Nimitz and William Halsey, who played key roles in World War II, astronaut Alan Shepard, U.S. President Jimmy Carter, and U.S. Senator John McCain.
Flying the United States Navy Flag Outdoors
The Department of Defense Directive 1005.8 asserts the order of precedence of military personnel, which we can safely assume mirrors that of military flags on an Outdoor Flagpole. That order is as follows: Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard. However, the Coast Guard Flag moves up right behind Navy when the Coast Guard operates as a service of the Department of the Navy during a time of war. As of this writing, the D.O.D. Directive has not been updated to include the Space Force flag (current as of 2003).
The recent addition of the Space Force flag has, therefore, generated some confusion. Most visible examples show the Space Force flag placed between the Air Force and Coast Guard flags. However, though it meets with historic precedent and follows the same guiding reasoning, this precedence has not been documented in writing that we have found.
In a mandatory directive from the Secretary of The Air Force (downloadable here) in August of 2020, the Space Force flag is ordered to be flown in the sixth position, after the Coast Guard flag (as pictured throughout our website).
When the flags are being flown on multiple Outdoor Flagpoles, the American Flag should always be flown first in line. If you are flying the Navy flag on the same pole as your American Flag, it should be of equal size or smaller and flown below the American Flag.
Displaying United States Navy Flags Indoors
When displaying Military Ceremonial Flags, the order of precedence remains the same as when they are displayed outdoors. The American Ceremonial Flag is always displayed first in the order. It’s also important to remember that when a Military Ceremonial flag is presented by a color guard, either indoors, during a parade, or on the playing field, a Parade Carry Belt must be worn.
Military Desk Flags and sets are another way to show your support for U.S. Armed Forces. Desk flags are small and versatile; they can be displayed on a podium, a desk, or even a window sill. These small flags can also be waved during a parade or celebration for the United States Navy Birthday.
Send us your pictures of U.S. Navy flags, American flags, flagpoles, ropes, or other accessories! We would be honored to feature your photography in our blog or on Facebook. Remember, photos of damaged flags and accessories are valuable, too.
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Have a great day, from your friends at LIBERTY FLAGS, The American Wave®.