Noted Black Southern Heritage Activist To Visit Ringgold Depot

For immediate release Tuesday, March 11, 2008

H. K. Edgerton, noted Southern heritage activist, will visit the historic Ringgold, Georgia, and its historic railway depot on Wednesday, March 12, officials at Southern Heritage 411 announced.

Edgerton, who is black, is the President of Southern Heritage 411, a Southern heritage watchdog organization, and is the former President of the Asheville, NC, chapter of the NAACP. His purpose in coming to Ringgold is to focus public awareness on the refusal of Ringgold City Council to replace a Confederate Battle Flag that was removed from the depot’s Confederate memorial area in 2005, after members of the NAACP complained about its being flown there.

Three other flags fly on separate poles at the depot memorial site: the present-day U.S. and Georgia flags and an 1863-pattern U.S. flag. The Confederate battle flag was removed from its pole shortly after the city put it up, and was replaced by a so-called Cleburne pattern unit flag, a blue flag with a white circle that is virtually unknown to all except Civil War scholars. The city said the Cleburne flag was historically accurate because Cleburne’s division fought at the Battle of Ringgold Gap on Nov. 27, 1863. The national and local Sons of Confederate Veterans countered that evidence shows other Confederate flags were present at the battle, and that at any rate the depot display is a memorial and that the Battle Flag is the correct flag to fly in that context. The Southern Legal Resource Center, acting on behalf of the SCV, demanded that the city replace the battle flag or face legal action.

“This is just another example of the politics of appeasement,” Edgerton said Tuesday. “The city put that flag [the battle flag] up in the first place and they were correct. “Then the NAACP said ‘Boo!’ and they took it down. I will bet you that most if not all these city officials had ancestors in the Confederate army. I’d be ashamed.”

For additional information contact:

H.K. Edgerton
Southern Heritage 411 Inc.
(828) 273-1991