Virginia Flaggers To Fly Historically Inaccurate Flag

Update: The more I think about it, the more I agree with a commenter below that on this particular issue I am splitting hairs. Perhaps I’ve allowed my disgust for this project to get the better of me. Take a listen to NPS Ranger, Christopher Young, who just finished commemorating the 150th anniversary of the battle of Chickamauga. He has the right idea when it comes to remembering and commemorating our Civil War soldiers. Finally, let me be clear that I am not offended by the sight of this flag. What I find offensive is how it is manipulated and abused by these people.

Next weekend the Virginia Flaggers will unveil their Confederate battle flag somewhere along I-95 in Chesterfield County, near Richmond. This week they unveiled their new flag on the steps of the Virginia capital. It appears they went with something that resembles the battle flag of the Army of Northern Virginia. I say resembles because if you look closely something is very, very wrong.

Virginia FlaggersIf you look closely you will notice that the stars are not spaced properly. Rather than protesting the Museum of the Confederacy for not flying a Confederate flag in front of their new location in Appomattox the Flaggers would have done well to take a look inside at some real flags…you know…the ones the soldiers actually carried into battle.

IMG_0204Remember, according to Susan Hathaway this project is about honoring the men in the ranks. You could say the spacing of the stars is a minor issue, but it seems to me that the details matter given the rhetoric of honor that the Flaggers have employed and the fact that this group began over the issue of the Confederate flag.

It is entirely fitting that this particular flag will fly along I-95 and we can only hope that the Flaggers will place a nice big marker at its base indicating who is responsible for it.

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23 comments… add one
  • Debbie Page Nov 6, 2013 @ 16:58

    I don’t think it’s splitting hairs at all. I am a proud member of the UDC and if we used a flag like that at one of our events, you can bet that the ‘flaggers’ would crucify us for it – calling us PC stooges and selling out our heritage. I’m sure they wouldn’t let the MOC in Appomattox get away with a flag like this, either. So I think you’re right on the mark with this one.

  • London John Sep 22, 2013 @ 0:59

    There’s something lame about the Flaggers’ new flag that I can’t explain; it needs an expert on visual language to elucidate. Would it be too fanciful to say that those little stars clustering in towards the centre look as tho’ they’re afraid of something?

  • Corey Meyer Sep 21, 2013 @ 16:48

    I thought the flag looked wrong as well but I think part of it is the size of the flag and the angle its photographed at. There are numerous examples of the stars in that pattern… At least they got the shape right…not another Naval Jack flying around. However I bet that won’t last past the first time they have to replace this custom made flag.

  • grandadfromthehills Sep 21, 2013 @ 9:24

    Kevin – you are a “hoot!” I got a really good laugh out of this one! It would appear that you have indeed attained a goal of entertaining with this posting!

    Be careful about splitting hairs. You will get a headache from eyestrain!

    Sam Vanderburg
    Finally enjoying some rain in Texas

  • catsgeesonexaminer Sep 21, 2013 @ 7:53

    I have to agree that it has come down to a “splitting of hairs,” and it’s of little consequence in the end. I am more concerned with the sentiment behind the placing of the flag rather than worrying about the size, etc. of the stars. There is one thing this California girl has learned since marrying a Southerner, and that is this, the Civil War is still being fought to some extent, isn’t it?

    • Kevin Levin Sep 21, 2013 @ 8:20

      Yes, but let’s not forget that the stars are not aligned properly. πŸ™‚

  • Brooks D. Simpson Sep 21, 2013 @ 7:02

    I for one applaud and approve this choice of flag for many reasons. As for Kevin’s quibbling about the historical accuracy of the banner, all I can say is … it’s heritage, not history. So this banner is a suitable symbol for the Flaggers. I just hope they maintain the spacing when they have to replace it after the original ages and suffers weather damage. Not to do so would represent taking another damnYankee blogger’s advice (oh, that’s right … if they maintain the spacing they’re taking my advice … what a dilemma!).

  • Forester Sep 21, 2013 @ 6:48

    Despite my usual disdain for Flaggers, I gotta throw in with Connie and agree that you’re splitting hairs. Besides, anachronistic CBFs are par-for-the-course at this point anyway.

    • Kevin Levin Sep 21, 2013 @ 6:51

      You might be right. I just thought the flag looked odd given what I’ve seen elsewhere in museums, etc.

      Besides, anachronistic CBFs are par-for-the-course at this point anyway.

      No disagreement with that.

  • Kevin Levin Sep 21, 2013 @ 6:11

    According to flag expert, Billy Bearden, this particular flag conforms to the Third Bunting Issue, which you can read about here:

    Sorry, but even in the example provided on the website the stars appear to be evenly spaced. In fact, all of the iterations of the flag show stars evenly placed between one another.

  • Connie Chastain Sep 21, 2013 @ 5:01

    Somebody needs to go back in time and tell these soldiers their flags are not historically accurate….

    Unevenly placed stars to accommodate a border around the central star….

    Unevenly place stars and a large one in the center

    Evenly spaced stars, but the middle one is missing, and the stars have eight points

    Stars with six points, and none in the center

    • Kevin Levin Sep 21, 2013 @ 6:12

      Interesting examples, but most of them appear to be poorly constructed and loosely based on what appear to be uniform parameters for most other ANV battle flags.

  • Patrick Young Sep 21, 2013 @ 4:36

    What the “Floggers” are missing is the generous spirit of compromise on the part of the “Flaggers.” Most people objected to them flying the Confederate Battle Flag and they will not be flying the Confederate Battle Flag.

    • Kevin Levin Sep 21, 2013 @ 4:38


  • Connie Chastain Sep 21, 2013 @ 4:30
    • Kevin Levin Sep 21, 2013 @ 4:32

      Thanks, Connie. All of the flags you link to display stars that are evenly spaced in contrast with the flag that the Flaggers plan to fly.

  • Patrick Young Sep 21, 2013 @ 4:15

    For some people, size matters more than quality.

  • Connie Chastain Sep 21, 2013 @ 4:12

    Oh, for criminy sake. There were lots and lots and lots of different kinds of battle flags. Didja see the one Andy featured on his blog? Red X, white BG, tiny little stars, flown by a Texas outfit?

    Ya know what? If a soldier from the ANV could see the I-05 flag, I don’t think he’d be a bit offended.

    • Kevin Levin Sep 21, 2013 @ 4:15

      Yes there were a number of different battle flags utilized throughout the war, but the Flaggers have apparently based theirs on the battle flag of the Army of Northern Virginia, which makes sense given where the flag is to be located. Even the flag that Andy displayed on his blog shows that the stars are spaced evenly.

      BTW, I believe I deserve a blog post for this. πŸ™‚

      • Al Mackey Sep 21, 2013 @ 4:30

        Kevin, it’s unseemly to request the blog post. Either you deserve it or not. πŸ˜‰ As to the flag, it’s heritage instead of history. πŸ™‚

      • Brooks D. Simpson Sep 21, 2013 @ 6:38

        It’s all about earning it.

        • Kevin Levin Sep 21, 2013 @ 6:41

          Connie always returns to her first love. πŸ™‚

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