American Flags Provide Freedom for Smithtown Mom
by Maureen Rossi
Modern Family is a fabulous funny award-winning television show that has won countless awards. Smithtown has its own Modern Family and they sell American flags. They are not a blended family like the one on television but they are Modern because innovative thinking has allowed one mother to stay home and raise her children while having a career.
Maureen Reynolds owns and operates AmericanFlag.com with her husband Dr. Jeffrey Reynolds. Originally in the field of publishing B.K. -before kids, the young mother of two now runs her flag business while raising her seven and three year old. “Jeff bought some domain names after 9/11 and Americanflag.com was one of them,” explained Maureen. She said she became a full-time employee in 2006, the same year she gave birth to their daughter Brooke.
“This was a great Plan B for when we had kids,” she added. With an English degree from Stony Brook University and two years as a writer for Publisher’s Clearing House under her belt, Maureen’s life took a drastic turn with the help of a newborn and a full-time job at the family flag business.
“We put ourselves on the map and got a lot of business by doing a free flag offers, one was for a 3 X 5 foot flag and then another was for a 2 x 3 foot flag,” she added. However, it was their search engine positioning that garnered them an enormous amount of business. The flags they sell are made in America and she is very proud of the quality of the merchandise. “It is so wonderful, freedom is what America is all about and this business gives me a ton of freedom for my kids and my family,” she explained.
Reynolds says she feels good about all the products they sell; flag poles, buntings, banners and flag stands. She says there are dozens of types of flags including hand-held flags, grave flags, parade flags, state and city flags and holiday flags. The company also sells various patriotic gifts like flag cases and patriotic signs.
“We noticed an uptick in traffic when people started ordering the Gadsden flag when the T-Party Movement came about,” she said. The Gadsden Flag is one of the United States Historical flags that displays the rattlesnake on it. She said she also notices upticks in sales when there is a hurricane or natural disaster somewhere in the country.
“Our flags are made of cloth, they are a great American product and it makes me feel good about what I do for a living,” she continued. Now in addition to her and her husband the company has four other employees. American Flags has been featured in the Congressional Record for their patriotism and were profiled by the Wall Street Journal and Forbes. Their President/CEO, Dr. Jeffrey Reynolds has appeared on CNBC, Fox Business News and on several nationally syndicated radio shows. Their website has been featured in more than 1,000 newspaper and magazine articles, including Real Simple Magazine and Romantic Homes and they are members of the Better Business Bureau and the security of our site is monitored regularly by Hacker Safe.
When it comes to flag etiquette Maureen said people can find detailed information on when to fly a flag and rules for displaying their flags on their website (see below). With the anniversary of 9/11 upon us Maureen made note that flags should be flown at half staff on this and all somber occasions. “If you have a glad pole that is attached to the home and doesn’t’ permit the flag to fly at half staff, you can purchase something called a morning bow to put on the flag, it’s a black bow that signified half staff,” she explained.
American Flags has shipped flags to military bases overseas, military families, they have provided flags for schools and parades. They even provided flgags for the movie set for Green Lantern which ironically starred Ryan Reynolds (their son’s name). Oh and one of their clients happens to include the television show Modern Family!
When to Display the American Flag
The American flag should be displayed on all days, but especially on:
New Year’s Day, January 1
Inauguration Day, January 20
Lincoln’s Birthday, February 12
Washington’s Birthday, third Monday in February
Easter Sunday (variable)
Mother’s Day, second Sunday in May
Armed Forces Day, third Saturday in May
Memorial Day (half-staff until noon), last Monday in May
Flag Day, June 14
Independence Day, July 4
Labor Day, first Monday in September
Patriot Day, September 11
Constitution Day, September 17
Columbus Day, second Monday in October
Navy Day, October 27
Veterans Day, November 11
Thanksgiving Day, fourth Thursday in November
Christmas Day, December 25
Such other days as may be proclaimed by the President of the United States
The birthdays of States (date of admission)
The American flag should be displayed daily on or near the main administration building of every public institution.
The American flag should be displayed in or near every polling place on election days.
The American flag should be displayed during school days in or near every schoolhouse.
How to Display the Flag
1. When the American flag is displayed over the middle of the street, it should be suspended vertically with the union to the north in an east and west street or to the east in a north and south street.
2. The flag of the United States of America, when it is displayed with another flag against a wall from crossed staffs, should be on the right, the flag’s own right [that means the viewer’s left], and its staff should be in front of the staff of the other flag.
3. The American flag, when flown at half-staff, should be first hoisted to the peak for an instant and then lowered to the half-staff position. The flag should be again raised to the peak before it is lowered for the day. By “half-staff” is meant lowering the flag to one-half the distance between the top and bottom of the staff. Crepe streamers may be affixed to spear heads or flagstaffs in a parade only by order of the President of the United States.
4. When flags of states, cities, or localities, or pennants of societies are flown on the same halyard with the flag of the United States, the latter should always be at the peak. When the flags are flown from adjacent staffs, the flag of the United States should be hoisted first and lowered last. No such flag or pennant may be placed above the flag of the United States or to the right of the flag of the United States.
5. When the American flag is suspended over a sidewalk from a rope extending from a house to a pole at the edge of the sidewalk, the flag should be hoisted out, union first, from the building.
6. When the American flag of the United States is displayed from a staff projecting horizontally or at an angle from the window sill, balcony, or front of a building, the union of the flag should be placed at the peak of the staff unless the flag is at half-staff.
7. When the American flag is used to cover a casket, it should be so placed that the union is at the head and over the left shoulder. The flag should not be lowered into the grave or allowed to touch the ground.
8. When the American flag is displayed in a manner other than by being flown from a staff, it should be displayed flat, whether indoors or out. When displayed either horizontally or vertically against a wall, the union should be uppermost and to the flag’s own right, that is, to the observer’s left. When displayed in a window it should be displayed in the same way, that is with the union or blue field to the left of the observer in the street. When festoons, rosettes or drapings are desired, bunting of blue, white and red should be used, but never the flag.
9. That the American flag, when carried in a procession with another flag, or flags, should be either on the marching right; that is, the flag’s own right, or, if there is a line of other flags, in front of the center of that line.
10. The flag of the United States of America should be at the center and at the highest point of the group when a number of flags of States or localities or pennants of societies are grouped and displayed from staffs.
11. When flags of two or more nations are displayed, they are to be flown from separate staffs of the same height. The flags should be of approximately equal size. International usage forbids the display of the flag of one nation above that of another nation in time of peace.
12. When displayed from a staff in a church or public auditorium, the flag of the United States of America should hold the position of superior prominence, in advance of the audience, and in the position of honor at the clergyman’s or speaker’s right as he faces the audience. Any other flag so displayed should be placed on the left of the clergyman or speaker or to the right of the audience.
Proper Disposal of a Flag
When a U.S. flag is so worn it is no longer fit to serve as a symbol of our country, it should be destroyed by burning in a dignified manner. Most American Legion Posts, VFW Chapters and Boy Scout Troops regularly conduct dignified flag burning ceremonies, often on Flag Day, June 14th. Contact your local American Legion Hall, VFW Chapter or Boy Scout Troop to inquire about the availability of this service. NEVER THROW A FLAG IN THE GARBAGE!