MORRISTOWN, NJ - This holiday weekend when the American flag will fly across our county, county officials think it’s a good time to think about what to with your old and tattered flags, and how to properly dispose of or retire them.

Did you know that it's illegal to throw away the American Flag? According to veterans’ organizations, when an American flag becomes worn, faded, torn or soiled, it should be retired and replaced with a new flag.The Flag Codes state that it should be destroyed with “with dignity, preferably by burning.”

There are several ways to respectfully dispose of an American flag, stated officials. The most common method is burning the torn or tattered flag in a special ceremony. This is best done by taking your old flag to one of Morris County’s many American Legion or VFW posts, where veterans and members may then hold a ceremony as they properly retire/dispose of it, they said.

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“The Freeholder Board is appreciative of this process for honorably retiring American flags,” said Freeholder John Krickus. ” As a Marine veteran, like all veterans, we served and sacrificed for our fellow Americans, and some gave their lives for their country so that we can enjoy the freedoms which the flag represents.”

Morris County residents have the option of bringing worn out flags to four collection boxes created by Chatham Township Eagle Scout Collin Goldbach and maintained by the Morris County Municipal Utilities Authority.

The red boxes are located at:

  • Morristown: Morris County Administration and Records Building, 10 Court Street, Morristown 07960 (inside the main lobby)
  • Mount Olive: MCMUA Mount Olive Transfer Station, 168 Gold Mine Road, Flanders 07836
  • Parsippany: MCMUA Parsippany-Troy Hills Transfer Station, 1100 Edwards Road, Parsippany 07054
  • Dover: MCMUA Curbside Recycling Building (Dover Armory Garage), 479 West Clinton Street (Route 15), Dover 07801

In 2018, Goldbach, in coordination with the Morris County MUAy, designed and built the bright red American Flag disposal boxes to call attention to proper methods of discarding worn Stars n’ Stripes. The program is managed by MCMUA Assistant Operations Manager Michael Nunn, a U.S. Marine and former Morris County Sheriff’s Officer.


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