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12 Surprising Places You’ll Find the American Flag

We expect to see the American flag adorning homes and waving over schools, post offices, and government buildings. But there are plenty of unexpected places where you can spot the Stars and Stripes, too.

Astronaut on lunar (moon) landing mission. Elements of this image furnished by NASA.Castleski/Shutterstock

The moon

Six Americans flags were planted on the moon during the Apollo missions. After a decades-long debate over whether those flags were still standing, NASA answered the question in 2012. All but one of the six are still standing—the only problem is, they aren’t “American” flags anymore. The nylon fabric has been bleached white from years of UV radiation and unfiltered sunlight on the lunar surface. The flag is only the start of these 15 fascinating facts you never learned about America.

Meghan and Harry wedding mugvia amazon.com

Royal wedding souvenirs

The royal wedding of Prince Harry and California girl Meghan Markle—now the Duke and Duchess of Sussex—brought worldwide attention and an avalanche of souvenirs sporting both the Union Jack and the Stars and Stripes, including this coffee mug.

 Miami Beach Florida, lifeguard house in a typical colorful Art Deco style,painted in the American flag colors on a summer day, with blue sky and Ocean in the background. Famous travel location.fotomak/Shutterstock

Miami Beach lifeguard hut

Miami Beach is famous for sizzling temperatures, glitzy boutiques, Art Deco architecture, and dozens of old-style lifeguard huts that stand sentry along the sand. This handsome hut is dressed up like Old Glory and makes a wonderful backdrop for a photo op on summer holiday to rival even these 25 American flag photos guaranteed to make you feel patriotic.

Chuck Taylors All Starsvia nike.com

Converse Chuck Taylor All-Stars

Arguably the most iconic of all sneakers, Chuck Taylors have been an American staple since the 1920s. Today they come in a bazillion styles, but none is as worthy of the All-Star patch as these red, white, and blue beauties. They are perfect for kicking around on Memorial Day and July 4th, or anytime you want to show your country’s colors.

Chinese and American flags together outsidePhoto Spirit/Shutterstock

Chinese factories

While the vast majority of American flags are made in the U.S.A., a whopping 94 percent of Old Glories that are imported—over $3 million dollars worth per year—come from China, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau. If this matters to you, check the label before you buy.

American flag waving in the wind.Marian Weyo/Shutterstock

The South Pole

Americans have occupied the South Pole continuously since 1956 when the U.S. Navy built the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station right next to the geographic South Pole at the southernmost place on Earth. The U.S. scientific research station has always flown an American flag outside the building. Here are some more fascinating facts about the American flag that prove it’s even cooler than you thought.

Tasty American flag pie on wooden tableAfrica Studio/Shutterstock

Pie

What’s more American than apple pie? This berry-and-fruit pie arranged like the Stars and Stripes. From sea to shining sea, creative bakers will be serving up delectable desserts with a patriotic tri-color motif this holiday weekend.

Footpath to Mount Everest Base Camp signpost in Himalayas, Nepal. Khumbu glacier and valley snow on mountain peaks, beautiful view landscapeBlazej Lyjak/Shutterstock

Mount Everest

About 4,000 people have climbed Mount Everest since Sir Edmund Hillary first reached the summit in 1953. It wasn’t until a decade later, in the spring of 1963, that the first American reached the top of the world’s highest mountain and planted an American flag. A few months later, President Kennedy presented that climber, Jim Whittaker, and the rest of his team with the National Geographic Society’s highest award, the Hubbard Medal.

Patriotic Red Barn with Painted American Flag and "In God We Trust"ThelmaElaine/Shutterstock

Barns

Nothing evokes quintessential Americana like a farm with a classic red barn. This weathered beauty in rural Spokane County, Washington shows off its patriotism with a painted flag and the words “In God We Trust. Life. Liberty.” Too subtle? Try one of the most beautiful Fourth of July firework displays around the country.

American Flag Blowing in the WindG Seeger/Shutterstock

A wee Scottish isle

The tiny Scottish isle of Islay played a magnificent yet little-known role in American WWI history. When, in February 1918, the USS Tuscania was hit by a German torpedo off Islay’s shores, islanders waded into the icy water and pulled 132 injured crewmen and more than 180 dead to shore. Determined to bury the fallen with honor, a group of island women crafted an American flag using an encyclopedia as a guide.

Months later, the islanders sent the flag to President Woodrow Wilson with the request that it be placed in a museum. In 2018, a century after the disaster, the Smithsonian Institution returned the century-old flag to Islay with our nation’s gratitude.

CHONBURI,THA-DEC 15: John Daly in action during Asia Tour Thailand Golf Championship 2013 at Amata Spring Country Club on December -15, 2013 in Chonburi, Thailand.almonfoto/Shutterstock

John Daly’s pants

Pro golfer John Daly is well-known for his driving distance off the tee, colorful personal life, and bold fashion sense. In particular, Daly has proudly shown off his collection of wildly patterned slacks at various golf tournaments. His American flag pants are a crowd favorite.

yellow industrial big crane with american flagAndrea Izzotti/Shutterstock

Construction cranes

Next time you pass a big construction site, look up. There just may be an American flag flying from a large crane boom looming above. Often a crane operator will hoist a flag on the boom so he’ll know what direction the wind is blowing since the boom will sway a lot on a gusty day. Luckily, worksite dirt and contaminant don’t break any of the American flag etiquette even you didn’t know.

Suzanne Rowan Kelleher
Award-winning content professional with over 25 years of print and digital experience on topics ranging from travel and lifestyle to health and technology. As the family travel correspondent at Tripsavvy.com, I cover the gamut of traveling with kids, including hotel and destination reviews, tips and advice on family road trips, air travel, and related topics. In my former role as the managing editor for MiniTime, I led the content strategy for a recently launched family travel website, assigning, editing and creating steady flow of travel stories. Previously, I co-founded WeJustGotBack.com and built it into a multi-award-winning family travel website and trip-planning resource. MAGAZINES & WEB: Travel+Leisure, Conde Nast Traveler, NBCNews.com/TODAY.com, ABCNews.com, Parade, FoxNews.com Travel & Lifestyle, Newsweek, Forbes, Good Housekeeping, Disney's Family.com, Parents, Parenting, Woman's Day, American Baby, Budget Travel, Esquire, Travel Holiday, Cigar Aficionado, Boston Globe. BRANDED CONTENT: Walt Disney Parks, Disney Cruise Line, American Express, Visit Philadelphia, Sleep Inn, Motel 6, Quaker Granola Bites.