NATIONAL AND ORGANIZATIONAL FLAGS 7000. GENERAL 1. When flown from ships or crafts of the Navy or from a flagstaff at commands ashore, the national flag will be displayed per the provisions of U.S. Navy Regulations. The national flag is also called the national ensign or ensign. 2. Marine organizations are equipped with a national flag and an organizational flag. The organizational flag is an official flag that is authorized to be displayed by an organization of the U.S. Marine Corps. 3. When mounted on a staff (pike) and carried by an individual on foot, or displayed or cased in a fixed location, the national flag is called the national colors and the organizational flag is called the organizational colors. The term colors means either or both the national colors and the organizational colors.
a. The use of the plural form of the word color (colors) to designate a single flag, ensign, standard, or pennant comes from the ancient tradition of referring to the multiple colors found on these types of standards. This tradition is carried on today when we refer to the national colors; red, white, and blue and the Marine Corps colors; scarlet and gold. The plural form is also used when referring to the types of movements, ceremonies or musical accompaniment involving the colors, i.e., carry colors, morning colors, To the Color etc. b. When designating personnel or units as part of color details then the appropriate singular or plural form of the word will be used, i.e., color guard, color company, etc. 4. When mounted on a vehicle, the national flag is called the national standard and the organizational flag is called the organizational standard. The term standard means the national standard only. The term standards means both the national standard and the organizational standard. 5. In garrison or on board ship, the colors of an organization, when not in use, are kept by the commanding officer. Whenever practicable, colors should be kept uncased and displayed in the office of the commanding officer, or other appropriate place. They may be cased, however, by placing them within a protective covering. Colors that are kept cased and not used often should be unfurled and aired frequently. 6. The colors (standards) may be carried in any formation in which two or more companies participate, and in escorts and honor guards when ordered. Separate companies and detachments, who are authorized organizational colors, may carry colors when two or more platoons participate. Unless otherwise directed for special ceremonies, the national colors will always be carried when the organizational colors are carried, but the national colors may be carried alone.
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7000 MARINE CORPS DRILL AND CEREMONIES MANUAL 7. In battalion formations, the colors (standards) will be posted with a designated color company and in regimental formations with a designated color battalion. The color company (battalion) is posted in the formation so that the color guard is in the approximate center of the formation (right or forward of center if this is impossible). 8. In most regimental formations, only the colors (standards) of the regiment will be carried. When two or more separate battalions are formed as a regiment, only the colors (standards) of one battalion will be carried for the regiment. When authorized by the commander, however, the organizational colors of subordinate organizations may be carried in ranks (massed color guard) arranged behind the parent organizations color guard. 9. When the organizational colors are draped in mourning, the mourning streamer shall consist of a black crepe streamer 7 feet long and about 12 inches wide. A bowknot, the loops of which are 6 inches long, is tied in the center. This knot attaches the streamer to the upper ferrule, just below the spearhead. If a streamer attachment set is used, the bowknot will be tied on the upper ferrule below the streamer attachment set in a manner so as not to disturb the natural hang of the units battle streamers. 10. Uncased colors will be treated with dignity and formality. When moved while outdoors, they will be marched by a color guard. Whenever possible, they will be escorted by a color company (battalion) from the organizational headquarters to the place of the ceremony. If it becomes necessa