RINGGOLD ATTORNEY CLAIMS BATTLE FLAG AT DEPOT WAS “TEMPORARY”
Friday, April 04, 2008
BLACK MOUNTAIN, NC – An attorney representing the City of Ringgold, Georgia, has informed the SLRC that the Confederate Battle Flag was never intended to be a permanent fixture as part of the Confederate memorial area at Ringgold Depot.
“The Confederate Battle Flag has been flown at the monument temporarily on a few prior occasions for special events in years past. However, it has never been considered by the City to be a permanent part of the monument,” attorney Stephen B. Farrow said in a letter to the SLRC.
Farrow’s letter was apparently intended as a belated response to two letters the SLRC sent to Ringgold’s City Council. The first letter explained in detail why the Battle Flag was the appropriate Confederate flag to be flown at the Depot memorial. When that letter went unanswered, the SLRC sent a second letter demanding the flag’s restoration to its place. SLRC Executive Director Roger McCredie said that Farrow’s reply misstates the case and ignores primary evidence. “I can’t tell whether Mr. Farrow just didn’t do his homework or whether he thinks we didn’t do ours,” McCredie said. “There is abundant documentation to show that the Battle Flag was intended from the very beginning of the project to be a permanent fixture at the memorial, it was installed as such when the project was completed and it belongs there now, despite all the shucking and jiving to the contrary.”
Four flagpoles were erected at the Depot memorial when it was completed in early 2005. The modern United States and Georgia flags and an 1863-pattern Stars and Stripes fly from three of the poles. At the time the display was finished, the Battle Flag was installed on the fourth pole. Concrete markers at the base of each pole describe the flags. A few weeks after the flagpoles were erected, representatives of the NAACP and others appeared before Ringgold City Council to protest the Battle Flag’s presence. The City then removed the Battle Flag and substituted the blue flag of Gen. Patrick Cleburne’s corps, which was present at the Battle of Ringgold Gap. The Battle Flag’s proponents maintain that the substitution was an act of political correctness that amounts to interfering with a memorial site.
The SLRC has said that it will pursue legal remedies on behalf of its client, the Georgia Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans.