Friday, February 11, 2011

A little history, anyone?

Since we had a couple of questions come up about the whole flag thing because of my Southerner or Yankee post yesterday, I thought I'd look some things up. For those who don't know, our South Carolina flag looks like this.
It was actually officially adopted right before the start of the Civil War in 1861. Before that, it looked like this.
I found it interesting to discover there are many debates about the crescent shape, but one is thought to be due to those who came from England to find their fortunes. It is believed that most of those men were second and third sons who had no hope of inheritance in England, and those sons had a coat of arms to distinguish them from first sons that bore a crescent shape like this. So it's thought that the state adopted the crescent to honor those sons who came to settle here.
Jimmy was partially right when he said that the Palmetto tree was added because the forts that were defended were built out of palmetto logs. However, it wasn't the Civil War forts that were defended, it was the Revolutionary War fort on Sullivan's Island that later became known as Fort Moultrie, named for the man who commanded the troops in its defense. The palmetto logs were softer wood so they didn't shatter when the cannonballs hit them.

Anyway, when we were talking about the Confederate flag, it was asked why South Carolina never adopted it as our state flag. That's what got me to looking up the history. When SC seceded from the Union, they flew this flag for a while to show their support of the action.
This flag was never actually adopted as a state flag, but it was used as the inspiration for the designing of Confederate Flag we all know. So it's kind of ironic that our flag basically caused the design for that one. What I didn't know was that the Confederate flag was never actually the flag of the Confederate States of America either. It was only a battle flag that was adopted by the military to distinguish the Confederate troops from the Union troops. During their initial battles, the Confederate Flag looked like this and was often confused on the battle field for the United States flag.
Also, many states adopted their own flags during the Civil War so it got a bit confusing to figure out who was who. This flag made it much easier to distinguish in battle, and the generals decided to adopt it as the official battle flag so that they all flew the same one no matter what state they were from. 
By the way, for those who didn't know, the Confederate Flag flew on the South Carolina State House from 1961 until 2000 when a bill was passed to remove it. However, it is still on the grounds next to a statue honoring the Confederate soldiers. Honestly, pulling it off the State House only draws more attention to it because it's more visible now on the ground. 

I didn't know that our State House has 6 Bronze stars on it that symbolize the cannonballs Sherman's troops fired on it. I really need to get out and see more in this state. It's like our sight-seeing stopped when we stopped moving with the military.  

Anyway, I found some of that pretty interesting. I hope I didn't bore you all to death with my little fact finding mission. There is really a lot of history in this state that could be investigated for quite some time.

In case you missed it, my Bailey did a fun guest post over at Bruce and Tuck's place last night. I also have a Half-Assed Weekend post set up for tomorrow, so if you are around that will be up. Otherwise, have a great weekend, everyone!


Bouncin' Barb said...

Very interesting history lesson. When we moved here and did the whole Charleston historical tour we were amazed to learn about the Revolutionary War history. Nobody associated the south with anything but the Civil War. Thanks for the research. When we were moving down and crossed in SC we took a picture of "Smiling Faces, Beautiful Places". We love it.

Oilfield Trash said...

I used to live in Mrtyle Beach for a while. My brother was actually born there.

Krissy said...

Barb.. I've been meaning to do the tours in Charleston, and I haven't gotten around to it. My parents have done it. You're right though that no one usually thinks of the south during that war.

OT.. You've never told me that before. Huh, you learn something new every day.

becca said...

great post and thanks for the history

Jimmy said...

oops--I had to go back and see what I had said :) see what I get for getting ahead of myself Ha Ha

There is a lot of History in South Carolina and the Statehouse grounds are so impressive.

100% correct in that the Confederate Battle flag was just that, a battle flag and never an official flag of the Confederacy, another mistake people make is by referring to it as the Stars and Bars, this was the name given to the First National Flag, which is the other one you displayed with the red and white stripes and 7 stars in a circle, the last flag of the Confederacy was the Third national flag, which is a white flag with a vertical red stripe down the front and the ANV Battle flag in the upper left corner.

Excellent Post Krissy I am impressed.

Krissy said...

becca.. Thanks. I'm glad you liked it.

Jimmy.. There were a lot of flags I could have put up to show the progression for the actual Confederate Flag. It was pretty interesting reading. Thanks for the compliment! It's funny but I hated history in school though I love looking things like that up now. I wish I could get paid to do it or just for my visits to Wikipedia. said...

Thanks for the interesting flag history, and have a great weekend, Krissy.

The Reckmonster said...

I lived in SC for a little while (Summerville - just outside of Charleston - where the Charlestonians would go to "summer" because it was supposedly a bit cooler). I was so enthralled with learning all of those things about Charleston - it is still one of my all time favorite cities. I still have a bunch of gear with the crescent and palmetto on it. =)


great post,I love history :)

Pearson Report said...

That was interesting. I really learned something!

Thanks for the insight,

Don said...

Every state has its own interesting history, some of which the folks don't like to talk about. For instance, Sunset Lodge, which used to be in Georgetown, SC. See

Bushman said...

I enjoyed your post and would've kept reading. Don't worry about being boring. Sometimes old stuff is as good as new!!! If they would just out the Miller High Life Girl on that crescent moon then you'd have something to really talk about.

Krissy said...

Robyn.. Thanks, and have a great weekend yourself.

Reckmonster.. That is definitely a historic and beautiful part of the state. The Palmetto and crescent are printed on pretty much anything down here. Glad you enjoyed our state. I know Summerville as I have friends who live there.

IWASNTBLOGGEDYESTERDAY... Thanks! I'm glad you enjoyed it, and welcome to my little part of the world!

Jenny.. I love to educate on occasion. :) Glad you liked it.

Don.. I've been meaning to post about that since you told me about it. That was definitely something I didn't know.

Bushman.. Welcome to my blog! I definitely could have written a lot more about that, but seeing as how I got such a good response I might have to sometime. I enjoy looking up that kinda stuff. Can't help ya much with the MHLG, but if they can do anything with that crescent in this state, they sure try to!

Anonymous said...

It's interesting to hear the history about other states. Besides California and of course the states that started this country, I don't know much other United States history and such.

The Adorkable Ditz' Missteps


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