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The Confederate Flag
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From the Baltimore Sun

The quarterly meeting of the Baltimore Chapter, United Daughters of Confederacy, was marked yesterday by the reading of an original poem on the Confederate flag composed and read by the President, Mrs. D. Giraud Wright. The poem is as follows:


The hands of our women made it,
Baptized in our mothers tears
And drenched with the blood of our kindred
With hope for those four long years,
Across vale and plain we watched it
While the tide of battle rolled,
And with streaming eyes have we followed
The wave of each soft silken fold.

As high over our hosts it floated,
Through dust and din of the fight,
We could catch the glint of spearhead
And the flash of crimson light;
While the blood of men who bore it
Flowed fast on the reddened plain,
And our cry went up in anguish
To our God for our martyred slain.

And we went and watched and waited
By our lonely household fire,
For the mother gave her firstborn
And the daughter gave her sire,
But the wife sent forth her husband
The maiden her lover sweet,
And hearts kept time in the silence
To the rhythmic tread of their feet.

As they marched o'er vale and mountains,
While our banners rose and fell,
Though victory often crowned it
As the Northern hosts can tell.
But the whole world was against us;
Our battle we fought alone,
Till the conquerors - want and famine -
Bade us lay our colors down.

Cold are the loved hands that bore it.
Stilled are the brave hearts and true,
Watching nor waiting can bring them,
Weeping is all we can do.
Light from our banner has faded,
We, in its shadow forlorn,
Have only our mem'ries left us,
And our battle flag drooping and torn.

No hand of vandal shall touch it.
'Tis shrined in our heart of hearts
With dearest, holiest mem'ries;
And the burning tear drops starts,
While laurel we weave and cypress
For the fair, the brave, the good;
The only stain on our banner
Is the stain of our heroes' blood.

The poem by Mrs. D. Giraud Wright, of this city, on the Confederate flag, read yesterday at the meeting of the Daughters of the Confederacy, will touch many hearts. The titanic struggle of which the Confederate flag is the symbol, and the noble qualities it called forth in a brave, conscientious and chivalric people, must ever command the interest and respect of all generous minds. All the world honors the magnificent efforts of the South in behalf of what it deemed right and expedient, though all the world may not view its failure with regret. The sentiment of loyalty with which ex-Confederates regard their flag is intelligible and commands the deference, if not sympathy, of those who upheld the stars and stripes. There is much that is pathetic in the memories the sight of the flag of the Confederacy invokes, and it has inspired many poems, of which Mrs. Wright's is one of the best.

It is with great pleasure that I am able to introduce among the rolls of the Confederate soldiers from Edgefield a poem (see page 471) on the Confederate flag. The author of the poem is a daughter of the late Colonel Louis T. Wigfall, of Texas, who was born at Edgefield. Some years before Secession Colonel Wigfall moved to Texas and was Confederate State Senator from the State during the four years of struggle and trial.

Of his career in life I know but little, but I was very deeply impressed by reading a speech he made while in the Confederate Senate. I think the speech was on a resolution to suspend the operation of the writ of habeas corpus; and Colonel Wigfall opposed with all the zeal and strength of a great mind te passage of the resolution. He showed with all the energy possible the evil effects that would follow and what a horrible thing it was to take away at one stroke al the rights of a citizen and all the rights of the States and reduce the whole country to the condition of a military despotism and subject to the arbitrary will of one man.

It was a strong plea for individual and personal rights, and for the rights of the individual States. And his plea was successful.

"The Confederate Flag" is copied from the Edgefield Chronicle of April 28th, 1897.

REF: Chapman: History of Edgefield County - pg. 469

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