This book chronicles the history of the Pledge of Allegiance with original documents and historical photographs, revealing a fascinating slice of America's past that has, until now, remained hidden from public view.
The book begins in 1888 with an advertisement in a mid-19th century journal to sell American flags. Thus began the Schoolhouse Flag Movement, and with it, the genesis of an effort to organize a nationwide celebration of the 400th anniversary of Columbus' discovery of America. From the Schoolhouse Flag Movement to the Cold War, every aspect of the development of the Pledge of Allegiance is explained, including why and when the phrase, "under God", was inserted.
The evolution of the flag movement, the accompanying emergence of various salutes, the role of the Chicago World's Fair in the first Columbus Day celebration, the dramatic account of how the Pledge was nearly left unwritten, the mystery attached to the Pledge's authorship, and the confusion about the actual date of Columbus' discovery—all make up the fascinating "story behind the story" that resulted in 13 million children reciting the Pledge of Allegiance one fall day more than one hundred years ago.