Shelby Foote on the Confederate Flag

Published in: on October 22, 2015 at 5:30 am  Comments Off on Shelby Foote on the Confederate Flag  
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Return the Flags

‘But they’re wearing blue, grandpa. They are yankees.’

‘No son. They’re Americans.’

Rough Riders (1998)

The video above matter of factly displays the flag of the 28th Virginia captured by the 1 Minnesota on July 3, 1863 during the repulse of Picket’s Charge.    The 1 Minnesota of course had its moment of glory when it delayed a Confederate attack with a charge that left 82% of the regiment dead and wounded, buying time with their blood for Union reinforcements to hold the line against the advancing Confederates, and likely saved the Union Army from defeat at Gettysburg.

One can understand the significance of the captured flag for the people of Minnesota.  Of course the flag also has significance to the state of Virginia, and a conflict has been simmering for years over the refusal of Minnesota to return the flag to Virginia:

Minnesota returned fire Wednesday when a Senate committee voted to ignore a request from the state of Virginia and keep a controversial Civil War battle flag.

The flag, which features the stars and bars of the Confederate emblem, was captured by the Minnesota 1st Volunteer Regiment at the Battle of Gettysburg in 1863. The 28th Virginia Infantry regiment, a re-enactment group based in the Roanoke, Va., area, has tried for years to regain possession of the flag.

Members say Minnesota is obligated to return the flag under a 1905 congressional resolution that says flags captured in battles should be returned to their originating states.

In 1998, then-Minnesota Attorney General Hubert Humphrey III rebuffed a request from the 28th Virginia Infantry regiment, saying the law applied only to flags already in the War Department’s possession. He also ruled that the group had no legal standing to request the flag.

Minnesota refused to return the flag.

Last year, Virginia’s Legislature and governor signed off on a resolution urging the Minnesota Historical Society to ‘‘facilitate’’ the flag’s return to Virginia.

The Historical Society again refused. (more…)

Published in: on February 15, 2013 at 5:30 am  Comments (1)  
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Stars and Bars?

A fascinating look at proposed flags for the Confederacy, and flags of Confederate units, states, etc, along with some modern variations.  At the outset of the War there was a strong sentiment in the South to keep the stars and stripes as the flag of the Confederacy.  Thank goodness this was not done, as the confusion on the battlefield can be easily imagined.  As it was, it was hard enough to distinguish Union and Confederate banners in the smoke of battle, and identical flags would have led to complete chaos.

Published in: on March 7, 2011 at 5:30 am  Comments (2)