Flag That Firefighters Raised at Ground Zero Returns to WTC Site

September 8, 2016 Updated: September 8, 2016
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NEW YORK—An American flag hoisted at ground zero hours after the Sept. 11 terror attacks has taken its place at the World Trade Center complex after disappearing for more than a decade.

The 3-foot-by-5-foot flag went on display Thursday at the National Sept. 11 Museum. The museum’s president, Joe Daniels, calls it “one of the most emotionally and historically powerful” artifacts in the collection.

The flag was the centerpiece of a photo that became a defining image of patriotic perseverance. The image shows three firefighters raising the flag over the rubble.

Two years ago, the flag was turned in by an as-yet-unidentified man at a firehouse in Everett, Washington.

Shirley Dreifus, center, the original owner of the American flag, left, that firefighters hoisted at ground zero in the hours after the 9/11 terror attacks, hold interviews at the  Sept. 11 museum, Thursday Sept. 8, 2016, in New York. After disappearing for more than a decade, the 3-foot-by-5-foot flag goes on display Thursday at the museum.  (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)
Shirley Dreifus (C) the original owner of the American flag (L) that firefighters hoisted at ground zero in the hours after the 9/11 terror attacks, at the Sept. 11 museum on in New York on Sept. 8, 2016. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

 

Shirley Dreifus, the original owner of the American flag, left, that firefighters hoisted at ground zero in the hours after the 9/11 terror attacks, speaks during an interview at the Sept. 11 museum, Thursday Sept. 8, 2016, in New York. After disappearing for more than a decade, the 3-foot-by-5-foot flag goes on display Thursday at the museum.  (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)
Shirley Dreifus (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

 

Examinations indicated it was indeed the same Star Spangled Banner.

A documentary about it airs Sunday on the History Channel.