Here come the stars and the stripes


In the spring of 1780, the second Great Seal committee consulted Francis Hopkinson, designer of the American flag and a signer of the Declaration of Independence. His contributions to the final design include the 13 red and white stripes on the shield, the constellation of 13 stars, the 13 arrows, and the olive branch with 13 olives—all on the front of the seal.

National Archives, Records of the Continental and Confederation Congresses and the Constitutional Convention