Author: James Breig

James Breig is a veteran author who specializes in history. His most recent book is “Star-Spangled Baseball: True Tales of Flags and Fields” about the links between the sport and flags. He is also the author of a nonfiction book about WWII, "Searching for Sgt. Bailey: Saluting an Ordinary Soldier of World War II" and co-author of "The Mystery of the Multiple Mothers," a novel. All three are available at His articles have appeared in newspapers and national magazines, including the Colonial Williamsburg Journal (search for them at and History Magazine. He has won many national awards for his opinion writing, media columns and feature articles.
Flag Information

Flags fell – and flew – as San Francisco quaked

San Francisco's city flag

Five score and ten years ago, San Francisco was devastated by an earthquake that sparked fires, felled buildings and killed thousands of people. But flags kept hopes alive, including the city flag. Some people think that the Golden Gate city’s municipal flag was created after the famous quake because the banner contains the image of… continue

History Lessons

Baseball begins and ends with flags

Flags flutter in the outfield in this 19th-century drawing

  It’s almost time to “play ball!” And with the return of the baseball season come plenty of flags – American flags, pennants and banners – which have always been associated with the game. Before Fort Sumter was shelled in the harbor outside Charleston, South Carolina, igniting the Civil War 155 years ago in 1861,… continue

History Lessons

Island flag linked to Chile – and to American flag

Easter Island's flag

With Easter’s arrival, it’s natural to ask some questions about Easter Island’s flag. Q. How did Easter Island get its name? A. Like Christmas Island, it was named by a European explorer. When Jacob Roggevee of Holland spotted the land on Easter Sunday in 1722, he became the first European to see the colossal statues… continue

History Lessons

On St. Patrick’s Day, Lincoln presented a flag

About to raise a flag, Lincoln exhorts his audience. (Library of Congress)

On St. Patrick’s Day, March 17, 1865, less than a month before his assassination, President Abraham Lincoln had a captured battle flag and freed slaves in mind as he offered “a few words only” to members of the 140th Indiana Regiment. Around 4 p.m., he spoke from a balcony at the National Hotel in Washington,… continue

History Lessons

1920s’ American flag contests excited youths

1926 American Legion Weekly cover

Ninety years ago, teenagers around the U.S. received a check to reward their love for the American flag. It happened because they entered a contest sponsored by The American Legion Weekly. Another contest, held three years later, sent winners around the globe. Under the heading, “Wanted: A Patriot’s Flag Creed,” the Legion invited “millions of… continue