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The Stars and Stripes—flying high in Laredo, Texas

P0006957 Husband Larry came home with some good photos of the 308 foot tall flagpole in Laredo, Texas.

Normally I would fuss about having images that showed power lines, business signs, et cetera, but on this occasion, all those things at "ground level" are needed to show just how tall the flagpole is. It is, in fact, 308 feet high, and flies a 100 ft. by 50 ft. flag. 

Laredo National Bank spent $300,000 to have the impressive flagpole built, which is located in the parking lot of a LNB drive-up bank at the intersection of San Dario and Matamoros streets, not far from the International Bridge II that spans the Rio Grande River between Laredo, Texas and Nuevo Laredo, Mexico.

Nuevo Laredo has a 120 ton flagpole that stands 340 feet high and flies a 165 ft. by 95 ft. flag that was erected in 1998, by the Mexican government. Husband would have taken a photograph of it, because it is visible on this side of the border, but yesterday the Mexican flag was not flying.

The facts

Designed and built by Steve Symonds and his company

308 feet tall, and flies a 100 foot by 50 foot flag.

The pole weights 52 tons, with a foundation that is 27 feet deep, and 15 feet in diameter, encased in 800 tons of concrete.

Embedded within the foundation is a cylinder that is 27 feet tall and 7 feet in diameter that holds the first, 5 foot diameter bottom pole section. Sand, 22 yards worth, was poured into the space between the cylinder and the concrete.

Subsequent pole section between 35 and 40 feet were added, reducing the diameter of the pole from 5 feet at the base to 16 inches diameter at the top of the P0006952pole.

The Laredo flagpole has a 5-foot diameter rotating ball at the top of the pole, allowing the flag swivel on the pole and fly with the wind, which greatly increases the life of the flag.

The flag cable is imbedded inside the pole, and the flag is raised and lowered by a 2 horsepower winch.

Two beacon lights flood the flag with light at night, and are changed via a helicopter as needed.

Other flagpoles in the U.S.

Prior to the Laredo flagpole, the tallest flagpole in the U.S. was the 232 foot tall flagpole in Birmingham, Alabama.  These flagpoles have been eclipsed by the 338 foot flag pole erected by Acuity Insurance in Sheboygan, Wisconsin.

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