Save the colors
Posted by brian65401 on Thu, 03/17/2005 - 6:21am.
That was a different time, and a very different kind of war. During the US Civil War (War Between the States, War of Northern Aggression, what have you) the colors of your unit were at the center front of your unit. Due to the powder used at that time, after a very short amount of fighting, the entire battlefield would be obscured in smoke. The regimental colors were a guide for the soldiers, stay with the colors, stay with your unit. The cry Rally 'round the flag, is an order for the unit to reform at its center.
In addition, the regimental colors were typically fashioned by the women of the town or county where a regiment was raised. This was an item made by their loved ones and brought into battle, thus forming that emotional bond. The worst disgrase would be to allow those colors to be captured by the enemy.
On this day, I guess it would be appropriate to mention the Fighting 69th. That is the 69th New York more commonly known as the Irish Brigade (their colors actually said 1st Rgt instead of 69th Rgt because they were the 1st Rgt of the Irish Brigade). One of the Regiment's proudest claims is that it never lost a flag in battle. At Fredericksburg they thought they had lost a national colors, but the next morning the flag bearer was found dead, sitting against a tree with the stars and stripes wrapped around him and the ends grasped tightly in his hands. As their colors stated...“Riamh Nar Dhruid O Spairn Iann”
Happy St. Patricks Day!
Your name:
Anne Onymous
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