Welcome to the Flags of the Confederacy

BBFThe Bonnie Blue Flag
Secession, States Rights & Palmetto flags
On 9 January 1861, the Convention of the People of Mississippi adopted an Ordinance of Secession. With the announcement of the Ordinance, a large blue flag bearing a single white star was raised over the capitol building in Jackson.
The first recorded use of a lone star flag dates to 1810. At that time the portion of Louisiana east of the Mississippi River, along with the southern portions of Mississippi and Alabama, made up the Spanish province of West Florida. This area had one been a part of French Louisiana. In 1763, after the French and Indian War, France ceded New Orleans and all of Louisiana west of the river to Spain. That portion of Louisiana east of the river was ceded to Great Britain, which named the region West Florida. West Florida was conquered by Spain during her campaigns as an American ally in the Revolutionary War. When France later re-acquired Louisiana from Spain, there was some dispute about whether or not the transaction included West Florida. Spain refused to relinquish control of the province, and the United States inherited the dispute when they purchased Louisiana from France in 1803.
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The original flag of the Confederate States of America, commonly known as the “STARS AND BARS”, was approved by the Congress of the Provisional Government of the Confederate States, and first hoisted over the capitol building in Montgomery, Alabama, on the afternoon of the 4th day of March, 1861. Congress did not adopted a formal Act codifying this flag, but it is described in the Report of the Committee on Flag and Seal, in the following language: read more
The second flag of the Confederate States of America, commonly known as the”STAINLESS BANNER”, was created by an Act of the Congress of the Confederate States (Statutes at Large, First Congress, Session III, Chapter 88), approved by the President on the 1st day of May, 1863. The Flag Act of 1863 describes the flag in the following language: read more
The Third Confederate National Flag
The third and final flag of the Confederate States of America, was created by an Act of the Congress of the Confederate States (Second Congress, Session II), approved by the President on the 4th day of March, 1865, four years to the day after the first raising of the STARS AND BARS in Montgomery. read more

Confederate State Flags

The states that made up the Confederate States of America basically went with either older militia colors (like South Carolina, whose militia flag dates from the Act of 1839, or Georgia, which used a post-colonial flag), revivals of older political flags (like Texas), or flags created specifically to represent the secession of that particular state and its new found sovereignty. The flags used were two-fold in nature: read more


Flags of the Confederate States Navy

Confederate Flags at Sea

Department of the Treasury:
Revenue Service Ensign








Flags of the Confederate States Armed Forces:

Starting in late November, 1861, the new battle flags were then presented to the Confederate units at Centreville and into December for other units in nearby parts of Northern Virginia. The flags were presented to each regiment by Gens. Beauregard and Johnston, as well as other army officers, in elaborate parade ground affairs. The Richmond Whig newspaper article of December 2, 1861, tells of the presentation at Centreville on November 28:
“The exercises were opened by Adjutant General Jordan, who, in a brief but eloquent address, charged the men to preserve from dishonor the flags committed to their keeping. The officers then dismounted and the colonels of the different regiments coming forward to the center, Gen. Beauregard, in a few remarks, presented each with a banner, and was eloquently responded to. The regiments then came to ‘present’, and received their flags with deafening cheers.” read more

Army of the Potomac
Army of the Peninsula
Army of Northern Virginia
Western Armies 1861 to late 1863
Western Armies late 1863 to 1865
Department of South Carolina, Florida & Georgia
Department of Mississippi & East Louisiana
The Hardee pattern Battle Flag
The Cassidy pattern Battle Flag

New Pages
Flags of the Missouri State Guard

Missouri State Guard Flag Bearer


Secondary Flags of the
Confederate States Army
Flags had both a symbolic role and a functional role during the American Civil War. Garrison and post flags symbolized the country’s ideals and goals but functionally they also served to identify the place over which they flew as government property. Military unit flags served as the “soul” of a combat unit but functionally they also provided a guide for maintaining alignment in battle, for leading a unit forward or rallying it if it broke. Some flags, however, were used by the military on land whose roles were far more functional than symbolic. Such flags included the flags which identified a hospitals as safe havens or directed wounded to them; flags that transmitted signals or messages over long distances; flags that distinguished the upper levels of the command structure within an army; flags that marked the boundaries of an infantry unit’s camp or its flanks in combat; and flags that served as marks to guide upon for cavalry companies or light artillery batteries. Although not as impressive as the unit flags and not considered with the same clam by their users, these functional flags also were part of the pantheon of Confederate flags. read more

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