Confederate Flag Controversy History

Updated June 26, 2019 | Infoplease Staff

by Borgna Brunner
The 'Southern Cross'

The "Southern Cross"

The Confederate battle flag, called the "Southern Cross" or the cross of St. Andrew, has been described variously as a proud emblem of Southern heritage and as a shameful reminder of slavery and segregation. In the past, several Southern states flew the Confederate battle flag along with the U.S. and state flags over their statehouses. Others incorporated the controversial symbol into the design of their state flags. The Confederate battle flag has also been appropriated by the Ku Klux Klan and other racist hate groups. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, more than 500 extremist groups use the Southern Cross as one of their symbols.

Confederate Flags of the Old South
A history of Confederate flags during the Civil War period

Confederate Flags of the New South
How those flags were adopted, and in most cases eventually abandoned, in the 20th-century South

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