Young Men's Secession Association of Mobile flag

 

Flag: Young Men's Secession Association, Mobile
Catalogue No. 87.1110.1

Provenance Reconstruction:

This flag was donated to the Alabama Department of Archives and History on July 4, 1907 by Thomas W. Sims of Mobile. It is listed in the Department's accession log as "unknown." However, on July 8, 1907, Mr. Sims wrote Archives' Director Thomas M. Owen:

"Referring to the flags that I recently sent you, I beg to state that I have gotten hold of some information that may lead up to their history. Mr. W. R. Brooks, after seeing the notice of same in the papers, stopped me on the street and gave me the following information: that, just before the war, there was an organization in Mobile called 'The Young Mens' Secession Club.' He remembers attending a meeting of same in which Judge [Edmund Spann] Dargan was the Speaker, and during the course of his speech, he pointed to a flag, on the platform, on which were the words, 'The time has come', and repeated these words three times. Mr. Brooks seems to think it was the same banner."

"My mother's brother, Mr. Frederic G. Stewart, was an active member of the Mobile Cadets at that time, and seemed to take a great deal of interest in military affairs, and it is through him, probably, that the flag was handed down to me."

The flag was identified as being that of the Young Men's Secession Association of Mobile by G. Ward Hubbs in his article "Lone Star Flags and Nameless Rags." According to Hubbs, the flag was presented to the Association on December 18, 1860 and is "perhaps the only surviving flag from presecession days". There are however, several flags from this period in the Department's collection.

The flag received conservation and was prepared for exhibit by Textile Preservation Associates Inc. of Ranson WV in October 2009.

Sources:
       Curator's Object Files, Civil War Flags, Alabama Department of Archives and History.
       Hubbs, G. Ward. "Lone Star Flags and Nameless Rags," The Alabama Review. October, 1986, pp.271-301.

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Updated: February 4, 2011