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HISTORICAL FLAGS

 

Fort Moultrie flag.

FORT MOULTRIE

South Carolinians defending Fort Moultrie in Charleston Harbor in 1776 raised one of the earliest flags of American liberty. The silver crescent appeared as a badge worn on their caps. The cause for which they fought-liberty-was emblazoned on the crescent.

Green Mountain Boys flag.

GREEN MOUNTAIN BOYS

General John Stark of New Hampshire commanded a militia brigade known as the "Green Mountain Boys.' Tradition relates that its green flag was flown at the Battle of Bennington on August 16, 1777. As in many American flags, the stars here were arranged in an arbitrary fashion. Nevertheless they signified the unity of the Thirteen Colonies in their struggle for independence.

 

Rhode Island Regiment flag.

RHODE ISLAND REGIMENT

The State flags of America found their earliest forms during the Revolutionary War. The starry canton in the flag of the Rhode Island Regiment symbolized national unity, but the white field corresponded to the uniform of the State troops. The anchor symbol and motto which completed the design had been used for more than a century. The original flag may be found in the State House in Providence.

 

Commodore Perry's flag.

COMMODORE PERRY'S FLAG

During the War of 1812 Captain James Lawrence of the Chesapeake encouraged his men, as he lay dying by exhorting "Don't Give Up the Ship." Three months later at the Battle of Lake Erie, Commodore Perry emblazoned these words on a flag which carried him to victory. Similar flags and mottoes have inspired Americans throughout our two centuries of existence.

Bennington flag.

BENNINGTON FLAG

Originally believed to have been carried during the Revolution, this flag is now seen as having probably been made for the 50th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence in 1826. Its design is typical of the exuberant artistic expressions found in flags of the 19th century.

Cavalry Guidon flag.

CAVALRY GUIDON

During the Civil War a special version of the United States flag-with swallowtail and stars of gold instead of white-was carried by the cavalry. General Custer and others used the flag in succeeding decades in the West.

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