Battle Flag of the 19th South Carolina Infantry
Rediscovered and brought home to South Carolina.
On June 29, 2010 Randy Burbage asked me to put together a list of all known South Carolina related War Between the States Flags. He knew of my interest in SC Flags and we were both on the South Carolina Division, Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCSCV) Flag Committee, Burbage being the Chairman.
The first part of July, 2010, while reading an old auction catalogue about flags, I came across a small line about a SC flag of the 19th SC Infantry in a small museum in East Tennessee: “and a flag of the same pattern, identified to the 19th South Carolina, is in a small museum in Oak Ridge, Tn.” For the next two weeks I emailed and called SCV Camps and museums in that area. Then, on July 20, 2010, I called the Children’s Museum in Oak Ridge, TN. I talked with Ms. Margaret Allard, asking about the flag, and she stated, “Yes, we have it”. She further told me that it was not on display, that it did not fit in with their museum and their focus was on the Manhattan Project and WWII, but it had been on display once before in the past. She told me that it was donated to them in 1979 by a Dr. Henry Ruley and that he must had gotten it from Mrs. Fred Randall of Oak Ridge, the granddaughter of Private George W. Wise, of Company B, 19th SC Infantry, CSA. The museum had a copy of the “Oak Ridger” newspaper from March 14, 1955 of her holding the flag. The newspaper went on to state that Private Wise was a Color Bearer of the 19th SC, carrying the flag during the War Between The States. Wise lost his left arm below the elbow in the war. The granddaughter also told the newspaper in 1955 that the flag was used at the premier of Gone With The Wind at the Grand Theater in Atlanta.
On July 20, 2010 Mrs. Allard emailed me pictures of the flag, front and back. It was sewn onto a piece of linen cloth and mounted on a wooden frame. Then, on March 11, 2011, my wife, Ernestine, and I visited the Children’s Museum to see the flag. Ms. Allard took us into a back room were she had laid out the flag for us. She allowed us to take all the pictures we wanted of the flag, close ups and with us with the flag. This was the first time there was talk about the flag coming back to SC. However, it was about them loaning the flag to the Confederate Relic Room Museum in SC. I gave her information on the Relic Room and Allen Roberson, Director of the Museum.