Sunday, June 3, 2012

How Do you Feel About Your Flag?

When I was young and in 4H club, I learned how to fold our U.S. flag properly and the rules for flying the flag. On my trumpet I played Reveille while the flag was raised and Taps when it was lowered. Fond memories! The Castleton Elementary School, which our children attended, presently teaches the children all about our flag and they learn the songs we learned as children, e.g., My Country Tis of Thee. When I used to play the game Where in the World is Carmen San Diego, you had to know the flags of all the countries. From all these experiences, I have a love for flags and I was delighted to see so many flags in the various forts and museums we visited this past week.

We saw a lot of flags at the National Civil War Naval Museum in Columbus, GA but I was most fascinated with the ones at Fort Sumter, Charleston, SC.

I’ll explain a little about the photos here. People are not allowed to take any flash pictures up close of any textiles. I took a lot of these from a distance and some are display boards.

Below is a replica of the 33-star US flag that flew over Fort Sumter on April 12-13, 1861 but had been battered by winds. The real flag is encased in a tube at the museum.
It, along with another smaller (10' x 20') garrison flag (above), had been carried by Major Robert Anderson from Ft. Moultrie to Sumter when he secretly moved his garrison. We don’t know how he managed to do it. I couldn’t even capture it by camera it’s so big (20’ by 36’).  Each star represents a state in the Union. After the battle, Abe could have made a decision to remove the stars of the seceded states, but he followed thru on his goal of unity and did not. Even though Kansas was admitted to the Union in January of 1861, its star wasn’t added until Independence Day of that year. After Anderson surrendered to Beauregard April 14, 1861, Anderson took both flags with him to NYC. In 1954 the flags were transferred to the NPS.

The 35-star US flag (above) was first raised over Fort Sumter on February 18, 1865, when the Confederates were forced to evacuate. This made a loud statement that the Union was in control of the fort. On April 14, 1865 (4 years after the original raising), the 33-star flag was once again raised above the rubble of the fort.

There were five different flags of the Confederacy. One of the flags looked like a surrender flag so it was replaced.

We are particularly interested in the flag Perry's parents gave us which we kept and didn’t put in the garage sale when we moved to FL. It is handmade and has 36 or 37 stars…when we return home, trust me…we will count them! No matter how many stars there are, we are united and free!


  1. I wear a US flag pin on my Viet Nam Veterans hat, fly a flag at home, fly a flag outside the RV usually. I used to fly NYS flag and POW MIA flag. The Florida sun is rough on flags, as is the wind. Oh, and I fly a Mickey Mouse flag. I like flags too.

  2. Perry and Karen,
    Charleston sounds like fun. We were going to head that way today, but one of our dogs wasn't feeling well this weekend. We figured that it would be better to stick close to the RV today, and check out Ft. Sumpter later in the week. We'll be here another week.

    Perry, nearly every evening, someone stops by to ask us about our Mickey light. I think of you when they do!

    Karen, I can send you lots of recipes. I know you are on the road so it would be hard to order one of my books, but "Trust God and Buy Broccoli" is availble on Kindle and Nook too!

  3. I have a flag at home that was in the family that has either 36 or 37 stars on it(it is tough when you get old and can't remember things). It may be home made which was done quite often back then.


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