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Direction of Eagle on Flag Pole... Originally Posted by libby.barbee You have a wonderful site. Thank you for all the helpful information. I do have a question, regarding the placement ...
  1. #1
    USAFlags is offline Administrator
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    Default Direction of Eagle on New Flag Pole

    Direction of Eagle on Flag Pole...
    Originally Posted by libby.barbee
    You have a wonderful site. Thank you for all the helpful information.
    I do have a question, regarding the placement of a new flag pole. My
    son is involved with the installation of a new flag pole for our city
    police station, as part of his Eagle Scout project. We have purchased
    an eagle to place on the top of the pole, and are wondering if the eagle
    should be facing a particular direction? I've heard that it should face
    Washington, D. C. Is this correct? Thank you for any help you can give
    us on this. We want to do it right!

  2. #2
    tedbriseno is offline Junior Member
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    Default

    Does the eagle itself on top of the pole have a significance?
    What does the dome or ball on top of the pole mean?
    How about the spear or any other item placed on top of the pole mean?
    What does the Code say about these?

  3. #3
    NAVA1974 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Direction of Eagle on New Flag Pole

    Eagles on top of outdoor flagpoles are not recommended regardless of the direction they face as the flag could snag on the wings and get torn. Best to use the round ball or flat truck, and keep the eagles on the indoor staff. Nick

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    tedbriseno is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Direction of Eagle on New Flag Pole

    It is my understanding that only the flag of the president should have an eagle on top. Is this true?
    Also, the gold ball has a seperate meaning or use for general purposes and the spear on top has a military or wartime meaning, maybe?
    Any protocol on any of this?

  5. #5
    Peter Ansoff is offline USA Flag Site Admin
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    Default Re: Direction of Eagle on New Flag Pole

    It is my understanding that only the flag of the president should have an eagle on top. Is this true? . . . and the spear on top has a military or wartime meaning, maybe? Any protocol on any of this?

    Well, sort of. Each of the armed forces has its own regulations about finials. The US Army regulation (AR840-10) specifies that the eagle shall only be used for the president; however, in practice it's also used for other senior officials. In the Navy, it's used above a boat flag when a senior official is embarked. There's a good summary here:

    Finials and Fringe

    Also, the gold ball has a seperate meaning . . .

    The gold (or silver) ball is generic as far as I know. I've had people try to tell me that the purpose of the ball is to prevent birds from alighting on the flagpole. If that was the intent, it obviously doesn't work very well, because I see birds sitting atop flagpole balls all the time!

    As has has been pointed out elsewhere on this board, eagle finials are not recommended for outdoor flags, because the flag tends to get snagged and torn on the eagle wings.

    Peter Ansoff

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    Peter Ansoff is offline USA Flag Site Admin
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    Default Re: Direction of Eagle on New Flag Pole

    How about the spear or any other item placed on top of the pole mean?

    Other than military regulations (which are discussed earlier in this thread), flagpole finials are pretty much generic. There are, however, two states that specify specific finials for their state flags. Maryland's finial is a heraldic "bottony cross," and Kentucky's is a cardinal bird.

    Peter Ansoff

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    Default Re: Direction of Eagle on New Flag Pole

    if i had a flagpole outside i dont think id have an eagle on it at all... just a ball.... i wouldent like my flag to get snagged by the eagle wings

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