What You Didn’t Know About Betsy Ross

By | July 2, 2019

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Living history reenactment of Betsy Ross making of first American flag, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (Photo by: Joe Sohm/Visions of America/Universal Images Group via Getty Images)

A few weeks ago, we honored the American flag for the Fourth of July holiday.  Let's reflect on the woman that, according to tales of the founding of the United States, stitched up the very first flag that would represent our new nation. Ask any school kid and they will tell you that Betsy Ross was that woman, the seamstress that George Washington tasked with sewing the stars and stripes. Aside from that one sewing project, we don’t talk about Betsy Ross and her life. Here’s what you didn’t know about Betsy Ross. 

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Sewing the first flag. (history.com)

Her Name Was Elizabeth

Betsy Ross was born Elizabeth Griscom on January 1, 1752. From childhood, she used the nickname Elizabeth. From a large Quaker family, Betsy was educated at a Quaker public school that stressed teaching hands-on skills. Most likely, this is how Betsy learned to sew. We do know that after her schooling was complete, Betsy’s father sent her to an upholsterer shop to work as an apprentice. The shop worked on all sorts of sewing projects, even flags.