Flags For the Fourth

Brooks and I decided to make a statement honoring the Union victories in the summer of 1863. This is one type of flag units who fought at Gettysburg might have carried.


It’s July 4. Back in 1863 it was the day after the Union triumph at Gettysburg: it was also the day Ulysses S. Grant took possession of Vicksburg.

Several weeks ago two graduates of institutions of higher education in the Commonwealth of Virginia decided upon a most appropriate way to mark this twin triumph of the armies of the United States.

Photograph by Kristilyn Baldwin. Photograph by Kristilyn Baldwin.

I have always liked the North Carolina monument. People forget that it was cast in New York City. Sculptor Gutzon Borglum’s works also include Stone Mountain and Mount Rushmore.

We then walked across the street.

Photograph by Kristilyn Baldwin. Photograph by Kristilyn Baldwin.

I’m not so sure I care for the proliferation of modern regimental monuments. The 11th Mississippi has been honored with new monuments at Antietam and Gettysburg. However, this regiment suffered terribly at Gettysburg.

Then it was down the street …

Photograph by Kristilyn Baldwin. Photograph by Kristilyn Baldwin.

Ah, the Old…

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  1. Billy Bearden · · Reply

    Nice flag. FYI there is nothing now on Stone Mountain by Borglum

    1. He’s there in spirit. 🙂

  2. This little flag-bombing stunt made my day.

  3. C.W. Roden · · Reply

    FYI there should be 35 Stars: West Virginia isn’t represented and it became a state before the Battle of Gettysburg.

    1. You’re wrong. The date that the 35-star flag became official was July 4, 1863, one day AFTER the Battle of Gettysburg. The units at Gettysburg with 34-star flags would not have been able to change their flags on July 4, 1863 because they were in the field. The flag we used was not only good looking but also historically accurate in every detail.

      1. Bob Nelson · · Reply

        By law, a star is added on the 4th of July following the admission of the state. Therefore the 35-star flag (with West Virginia) became “official” on July 4, 1863. I do have a question, however. Just what flag is that you guys are holding? The 35-star flag had 5 rows of 7 stars each. No circle or 4 stars in the corners.

        1. It’s a historically accurate reproduction of one version of a 34-star flag. At the time there wasn’t a regulation on how the stars in the canton should be arranged.

          1. Bob Nelson · ·

            Sorry, Al. What I should have written was that the 34-star flag had 4 rows of 7 and 1 one row of 6. You write that this is ONE VERSION and that I suppose is possible. But all of the 34-star flags I find on Internet are as described above.

  4. Mike Rogers · · Reply

    You two are just troublemakers

  5. Bob Nelson · · Reply

    No off-the-wall comments about the hat or the beard. Although I could!!! I really could!!! LOL Nice to see you guys actually walk the fields as Pete Taylor and Mike Kiernan and I have done several times. IIRC, it was Jay Luvaas who told Pete at the War College that to understand the battles you have to walk the ground. But I do really love the hat and the beard.

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