South Carolina is widely acknowledged to have one of the most beautiful state flags in the country. Created by Col. William Moultrie, the flag features a palmetto tree, which became a beloved icon of the state. But what about that crescent shape in the corner? Many people call it a moon but is it really?
Historian Rodger Stroup says flag originated with Col. William Moultrie, who took the blue of his soldiers' coats and the crescent shape from their hats to fashion a signal to let the city of Charleston know if and when the British were coming during the Battle of Sullivan's Island prior to the Revolutionary War. He quotes Moultrie's diary, which says the design is simply a crescent, which is fellow historian Eric Emerson's view. But, as Stroup points out, a glance at the dictionary definition of "crescent" tells one that a crescent is a quarter, or three-quarter, moon.
People routinely call it a moon, which Emerson understands, but doesn’t technically agree with. Then there's the gorget argument. Stroup tells us that some people believe the crescent to be an homage to the gorget, a piece left over from the era when armor was in use. Both men say they don't mind if people call it a moon (as if they could stop it), but more important is the history the symbol represents.
- This indicator was developed to encourage inquiry into historical events, including figures, symbols, and observances, that have been important to the U.S. over time as well as how they impact us.
- 2.H.1 Identify and compare significant historical events, moments, and symbols in U.S. history.
- This indicator was developed to encourage inquiry into how to critically evaluate sources for validity. The indicator was also developed to promote inquiry into how to ensure data is accurate, citable, complete, credible, current, and objective.
- This indicator prompts students to inquire about how geography influences economic activities around the world. Economic livelihoods may be expressed by agriculture (subsistence, commercial), industry, and services.
- This indicator was developed to encourage inquiry into the process which led to the formation of the U.S. government, including the convening of the Continental Congresses, the passage of the Articles of Confederation, and the adoption of the U.S. Constitution.