Thursday, January 29, 2015

Va Flaggers Lee-Jackson Weekend Report Part III - VMI

After making our way to VMI, we assembled on the parade grounds, at Jackson's statue.  Almost immediately, Cadets came out to speak with us, and to pose for photos with Generals Jackson and Lee.  As three young men were standing with us, a man came out of the archway, very agitated and screaming the Cadets' names.  He approached and demanded they get away from "those people" and "that thing".  We can only assume that by "those people" he meant the re-enactors portraying Lee and Jackson, and the men and women gathered to honor them on the holiday, and by "that thing" he meant the Confederate Battle Flag.

For the remainder of the half hour or so we visited the grounds, a Cadet was posted at the arch to prevent any cadets from communicating with us.

One of our Flaggers placed two battle flags at Little Sorrell's marker.  A VMI employee came out and told him that he would need to remove them when he left.

After paying our respects and singing a rousing version of Dixie for the Cadets who had gathered at open windows, we began to make our way back to downtown Lexington, to continue flagging.  At this point, I noticed that one of our young Flaggers was still at Jackson's statue.  I was informed that he had told others that he was very angry about the treatment of the cadets earlier and the fact that he could not leave the stick flags at Little Sorrell's marker, so he had decided to post the colors at that spot for the rest of the day.  I walked over to speak with him, and knew by the set of his jaw as I approached that he was determined to make his stand.

It just so happens that this young man is the GGG nephew of VMI Cadet/Confederate Veteran Moses Ezekiel.  My only concern at this point was to try and make sure he got a bite to eat, so when Va Flagger Bo Traywick (VMI Class of '69) volunteered to stand in his place while he went to get some lunch, he agreed to leave his post long enough to do so. 

When he returned, he brought his 6x9 battle flag and remained at his post, in front of Jackson's stature for the remainder of the day.  He reported to us that by this time the Cadet guard was relieved of his post, and that once again, Cadets began to approach him, ask why he was there, and show their support, and pose for photos.  This continued throughout the afternoon. 

Near dusk, an older man who said he was a VMI employee came out and told him that he would have to leave, since formation was scheduled to occur soon and that he would "offend" black cadets.  After a brief, somewhat heated discussion, where the young man explained to the man who he was, why he was there, and described the numerous black Cadets that had just spoken with him and posed for photos, the young man removed the stick flags and left the campus.

As he left, he was stopped by a black man visiting campus, who made it a point to shake his hand and let him know that he understood completely about the flag he was carrying and the honor due Lee and Jackson and was sick and tired of people speaking "for him" in that regard.  After that encounter, and as he was leaving campus, he was approached by a gentleman who said he had overheard the "discussion" with the VMI employee before he left the grounds and had gone to the Stonewall Jackson House and purchased a gift for him, presented him with the gift, and let him know how much he appreciated the stand he had taken that day. 

I have heard that our detractors commented on the "graying" of our ranks, when photos of the huge crowds gathered in Lexington began to surface.  That observation may be a fair one, but when I consider the stand that one 15 year old boy took, acting without prompting and with a pure heart, it occurred to me that once again, it was the youngest among us who led the way, and set the example for us all.

For those back in town, Flaggers reported another successful afternoon of Flagging, with overwhelmingly positive responses and MANY instances of folks stopping to shake our hands and thank us for being there.

In the afternoon, these young men joined us at the corner of Nelson and Main Street. At first, we thought they were part of a pledge for a college fraternity, but after talking with them, they told us they were high school kids just looking to join in the fun we were having. They said they had no opinion one way or the other regarding the Confederate flag and were just out there for satire. The signs were GREAT! We gave them some tips on improving sign visibility and proper flagging techniques. We even tried to teach them "God Save the Queen". They said they looked it up online before they came, but couldn't quite get the tune. I guess they don't teach "My Country Tis of Thee" in school any more. ;)

They were great kids -- polite, respectful, and clever -- and we enjoyed having them there.

As the sun set in Lexington, the last Flaggers standing were exhausted, but left with hearts filled with emotion from the two days spent honoring Lee & Jackson, protesting those who refuse to do so, and changing hearts and minds in Lexington.

Please take a moment to watch this truly breathtaking video, courtesy of our friends at Tredegar DroneWorks, with some incredibly moving photos and video taken in Lexington, including a glimpse of the new Jackson Farm Memorial Battle Flag on Highway 60 in Lexington:

Great coverage in the local media here:

and here:

and finally, a message received from a VMI Cadet, sent Saturday afternoon:
"Great showing by the Flaggers at the Institute today! It does my heart good, lookin' out of barracks and hearing Dixie. Keep up the good fight!"
As always, thank you all for your continued prayers and support!

Susan Hathaway
Va Flaggers

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Virginia Flaggers
P.O. Box 547
Sandston VA 23150

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Va Flaggers Lee-Jackson Weekend Report Part II -- Washington & Lee University

Saturday morning, we gathered at Stonewall Jackson cemetery for a memorial service for General Jackson. Once again, God smiled on the Confederates gathered to honor Lee & Jackson with beautiful weather…sunny, breezy, and temperatures near 50 degrees!  A large crowd was on hand for the service, and those in attendance paid respects to the General through prayer, singing hymns, and laying memorial wreaths.

Immediately following the service, we formed up for a parade through Lexington.  Our unit was led by Generals Lee and Jackson, a Flagger color guard, and followed by the largest group of flaggers we have ever had attend the event including SCV, UDC, OCR and Mechanized Cavalry members from across the Commonwealth and the country!  It seemed to us that there were about twice as many folks gathered to watch the parade as there had been last year as well.  It was truly a glorious site, to see the parade stretched down main street, and the street filled with flags and supporters of Confederate heritage. Along the route, we sang Dixie, handed out stick flags, and received the support and well wishes of all who had gathered. 

At the end of the route, the parade took a detour from its normal path.  Instead of heading to Washington and Lee University, we were directed the opposite way, and into the municipal parking deck.  At this point, we turned and our entire unit headed over to Letcher Ave., to make our way to VMI to pay our respects to General Jackson before the Memorial Service, as has been our custom for the past several years.

As most of you know, a group of 6 students who attend Washington and LEE university's school of law wrote a letter in April of 2014 to Washington & LEE officials (copy attached) which demanded that the university €œhold itself responsible for the racist and dishonorable conduct of Robert E. Lee.€  Specifically, these agitators demanded the following mandates be implemented, threatening €œcivil disobedience€ if the administration failed to comply tot their demands:

1)  We demand that the University fully recognize Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on the undergraduate campus.

2)  We demand the University stop allowing €œNeo-Confederates€ (i.e.SCV, UDC, re-enactors) to march on campus with confederate flags on Lee-Jackson Day and to stop allowing these groups to hold programs in Lee Chapel.

3)  We demand that the University remove all confederate flags from its property, including those flags located within LEE Chapel.

4)  We demand that the University issue and official apology for the University's participation in chattel slavery and a denunciation of Robert E. Lee's participation in slavery.

In July, W&L President Ruscio began the systematic capitulation to these demands when he stripped the replica memorial Army of Northern Virginia Battle Flags from the chamber which holds the "Recumbent Lee" statue in the LEE Chapel.  Shortly thereafter, Confederate Flags were prohibited on the grounds, and those wishing to visit the Chapel were not allowed to carry a Confederate flag and were made to remove apparel that had a Confederate flag on it.  Recently, W&L officials announced that classes would be canceled next school year in celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, and this year, the LEE Chapel was not available to the SCV and UDC for their annual Lee-Jackson Day memorial service, reportedly (and conveniently) due to renovations.

Throughout the weekend, we had Flaggers stationed at Washington & Lee, and Campus Security was right there to make sure none of "those flags" were allowed on the property.  One of our flaggers, speaking of his conversation with one of the security officers, remarked,  "I told him it was a sad day in America when the borders of W&L are more secure than those of the United States."

As our group walked up Letcher Avenue after the parade, we stopped for a photo, unveiling the 20' x 30' flag that will soon be raised on I-81 in Lexington.

Security guards rush to ensure an education did not break out at Washington & Lee University.

At this point, those who still wanted to make the trip to VMI, including our own Robert E. Lee, portrayed by an elderly Vietnam Vet, were forced to walk back down Letcher Ave, cross busy traffic twice, and climb a very steep, difficult to navigate entrance, in order to access the VMI parade grounds.

For those who were not keeping track, this means that officials at Washington & Lee have already capitulated to THREE of the FOUR ludicrous demands made by the agitators, in effect giving full credence and agreement to their assertion as to the €œracist and dishonorable conduct of Robert E. Lee.


"Obstacles may retard, but they cannot long prevent the progress of a movement sanctified by its justice, and sustained by a virtuous people."-President Jefferson Davis

Despite the obstacles presented, we made it to VMI to pay our respects, although the hassle, delays, difficult hike, and lost time meant that many did not make it back in time for the Noon service at Lexington Presbyterian.

Our next and final report  will share our experience at VMI and the final hours of flagging Lexington that afternoon.

 Grayson Jennings
Virginia Flaggers
P.O. Box 547
Sandston VA 23150

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

VaFlaggers: Lexington Report -- Flagging Friday

Greetings Patriots!  We have much to share about the incredible turnout, events, and experiences during the Lee-Jackson Holiday weekend in Lexington, Virginia.  This will be the first of several reports, in an attempt to inform, inspire, and properly thank all of those who had a part in making it the biggest and best ever!


Ever since the City Council voted to ban ALL flags from city light pole flag stands (except the US flag, Va State Flag and non-existent Lexington City Flag), the Va Flaggers have taken to the streets of Lexington on the State Lee-Jackson Day Holiday, which is the Friday closest to Robert E. Lee's birthday.  This Friday, BY FAR, was our best ever, with more folks attending, and more opportunities to educate and change the hearts and minds of those willing to listen, and stand up to those who refuse to hear or accept the truth regarding Lee and Jackson, their flags, and the men who fought and died beneath them.

We started the day with 54 folks meeting at Jackson Cemetery for instructions, information, and an invocation, asking God's protection and blessing on our endeavors.  Armed with flyers, flags, and the determination of our ancestors, we took to the sidewalks of Lexington, spreading out and taking positions at city light poles from the Stonewall Jackson Cemetery stretching down Main Street and over to Washington & Lee University.  It was a beautiful sight to behold, looking down from Main at the flags of our forefathers lining the streets of the city once considered €œThe Shrine of the South€.  The weather, ominous just the day before, was almost perfect.  Temperatures reached the upper 40's, with sunshine and a gentle breeze to lift our flags throughout the day.

At 1:00 pm, we gathered just a few blocks from the city center on Route 60 to raise the first Lexington Memorial Battle Flag, as reported earlier.   Our numbers continued to grow, as over 60 folks attended the dedication, and then headed back to Lexington to resume flagging.


By the time we left the Lexington sidewalks at dusk, over 80 people had joined us, many flagging for the first time, and all reporting very positive exchanges and experiences with citizens, tourists, and students throughout the day.  We printed 350 flyers and were completely out of "ammo" (the term coined by our own Sgt. Troutman for our literature) before the day was over! 

Exhausted, but galvanized by the incredible turnout and success of a very long day, we met at Country Cookin' (by invitation of the good folks there!) and counted over 100 in attendance, double what we had reserved, as more folks came in that evening.  After a great meal and last minute instructions for Saturday, we retired for the evening with great anticipation, realizing that the influx of folks who could not take off work to be with us Friday would mean even more flags and Flaggers on Saturday. 

Great press coverage and more photos here:

Excellent commentary here...

...and here:

Stay tuned...much more to come...


Friday, January 16, 2015


This afternoon, during the Lee-Jackson State holiday in Virginia, the Virginia Flaggers took a break from flagging Lexington and Washington & Lee University, just long enough to raise a 10 x 15 Battle Flag on a 50 foot pole in a small ceremony on private property on Route 60, just outside of Lexington's city limits. 

The flag will fly in honor and memory of all Confederate soldiers, and specifically to remember Generals Robert E. Lee and Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson, the great Virginians whose final resting places are within just a few blocks of the memorial.

When we placed an ad a few months ago in the local paper, we were thrilled to receive calls from several citizens who were eager to offer their property for the placement of a memorial flag.  It seems that we are not the only ones who are upset about the way officials in Lexington have turned their backs on Lee, Jackson, and the rich and honorable Confederate history and heritage of Lexington.  This property, with its elevated location and close proximity to town, seemed a perfect location and we were thrilled at the prospect of placing a memorial flag on the hill.   Little did we know that there was even more to this property than we imagined....

In 1859, Thomas J. Jackson took out a $500 note to purchase 13 acres just outside of Lexington, with the intention to farm the land, using the proceeds to pay the note. The War Between the States changed his plans, and in 1862 he wrote J.T.L. Preston and asked him to sell his little farm, which he did.  The Va Flaggers have recently received information that the flag raised today is located either directly on or adjacent to the property owned by General Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson.  We are overwhelmed by the knowledge that this Memorial flag, raised in honor and memory of Lee & Jackson, would also have such a profound and personal connection to General Jackson. 

She will be a living, breathing memorial to our Confederate dead, and a beautiful tribute to our gallant ancestors.  But, in the face of constant attacks by those who worship ignorance, historical revisionism, and political correctness, and at a time when officials in Lexington seem determined to completely ignore the sacrifice of her own citizens, and dishonor Lee & Jackson by their words and deeds, she will also be a visible reminder to all who see her that there are still many of us with Confederate blood coursing through our veins, who refuse to allow the ignorance and prejudice of others to force us to relinquish our birthright.

The Lexington Jackson Farm Memorial Battle Flag is the third roadside memorial battle flag erected in Virginia by the Va Flaggers since September of 2013, and part of an ongoing project to promote Confederate history and heritage, and honor Confederate Veterans in the Commonwealth.  These projects, and numerous other heritage defense efforts, are made possible through the generosity of supporters from across America and beyond.

Virginia Flaggers

P.O. Box 547
Sandston VA 23150

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

VaFlaggers: Lexington Update...Coundown 4 Days

Question received..."What flag should I bring?"

While all Confederate flags are welcome and appropriate, we suggest you consider carrying one of the flags that was banned from display on City flag stands, which included...

Robert E. Lee's headquarters flag
Unreconstructed Virginia State Flag
The Second National Flag (Stainless Banner)
The First National Flag (Stars & Bars)

...and, of course, the ANV battle flag, which represents Lee, Jackson, and all the men who served under them.

We will have a good supply of flags available. A minimum 8' pole is suggested for flagging.

Join us, as we "take it to the streets" to let the folks in Lexington and Washington & Lee University know that there are still many of us who honor Lee and Jackson and will not go away quietly.

We will flag all day Friday, participate in memorial services and the parade on Saturday, and flag Saturday afternoon/evening. We welcome all those interested in standing with us to attend Friday, Saturday, or both days.

Meet at Stonewall Jackson Cemetery Friday at 10:00 a.m, Saturday for details, a complete schedule, and more information. 

RETURN the flags!
RESTORE the honor!

*Photo design courtesy of Chief James Skelton.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Va Flaggers: Lexington Update-Countdown: 7 Days

A week from today, the Va Flaggers will gather in Lexington for the Lee-Jackson holiday. Friday, January 16th is the Virginia State Holiday for Lee-Jackson Day, and Saturday, January 17th is officially recognized as Lee-Jackson Day in Lexington. The Virginia Flaggers will flag the town of Lexington for action taken by City Council to ban ALL flags from city light pole flag stands, rather than allow the flags of Lee and Jackson to fly for the week leading up to the State holiday, AND Washington and LEE University for actions taken by President Kenneth Ruscio to desecrate the LEE Chapel by removing battle flags from the Lee Mausoleum in response to the demands of 6 agitators/students.

Since the City Council of Lexington, Virginia voted to ban ALL flags (except the US, State and non-existent City flags) from flying on city light pole flag stands, rather than allow the flags of Lee and Jackson to fly for several days leading up to the Virginia State Lee-Jackson Holiday, the Virginia Flaggers have called for a FULL BOYCOTT of Lexington, Virginia. When we gather for the upcoming holiday and events, we ask that all participants make their arrangements for lodging, eating, entertainment and shopping OUTSIDE of the town limits. The map below provides an outline of the town boundaries. Please join us in making sure that the town that has turned its back on Lee and Jackson and its rich Confederate heritage, does not profit from what could have been a windfall of much needed revenue.

Honor Lee and Jackson...BOYCOTT LEXINGTON!

Join us, as we "take it to the streets" to let the folks in Lexington and Washington & Lee University know that there are still many of us who honor Lee and Jackson and will not go away quietly.

We will flag all day Friday, participate in memorial services and the parade on Saturday, and flag Saturday afternoon/evening. We welcome all those interested in standing with us to attend Friday, Saturday, or both days.

Meet at Stonewall Jackson Cemetery Friday at 10:00 a.m, Saturday for details, a complete schedule, and more information.

RETURN the flags!
RESTORE the honor!

Virginia Flaggers
P.O. Box 547
Sandston VA 23150