In the question If Puerto Rico becomes the 51st U.S state, would the U.S flag be altered to include 51 stars?, it was pointed out that there have already been several proposed designs for a 51 Star US flag.

US flag with stars in a circle

US flag with stars in six rows of alternating length

US flag with stars in a hexagon

In the event that an additional state does join the United States, increasing the total to 51 states, who would actually choose which design of the US flag to use? Congress? The president? Someone else?

  • 1
    These designs should be credited Commented Jun 13, 2017 at 2:17
  • @SleepingGod The first and second are in the public domain, so no credit is necessary or expected. The third is Creative Commons, which does require I attribute it to Wikipedia user Milan Suvajac (that said, I'm not entirely certain that they can put a US flag redesign under CC, but that's probably a question for Law.SE). Commented Jun 13, 2017 at 3:11
  • I'm going to channel my inner Al Haig and state that I'm in charge of that. Commented Aug 15, 2017 at 13:58

1 Answer 1


Apparently it's the President. From USFlag.org:

On January 3rd,1959 Alaska was formally granted statehood placing the 49th star on our Flag. Executive Order of President Eisenhower dated January 3, 1959 - provided for the arrangement of the stars in seven rows of seven stars each, staggered horizontally and vertically.

Wikipedia identifies the executive order as 10798 - Flag of the United States. The executive order includes a drawing of the new flag.

The current flag was established by Executive Order 10834 - The Flag of the United States, also by Dwight Eisenhower.

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