10.28.2010

Here's Wild Bill holding his birthday gift from Susan's son.

Wild Bill is big on flags and history and politics and is in the habit of opining at great length on each*. He carries a copy of The Constitution to keep him occupied when he has some free time and has been known to liberate a flag when incorrectly displayed.

Wild Bill enthusiastically educated Susan's children on the history of this particular flag; the Gadsen flag.

It was named for Colonel Christopher Gadsen who was involved with the first mission of the Navy in 1775. Accompanied by the Marines, the Navy was established to grab incoming British ships carrying war supplies to their troops in the colonies. The Marines carried yellow drums on which a coiled rattlesnake with thirteen rattles and the motto Don't Tread On Me were painted. Afterwards, Gadsen made up some flags and gave them away to a bunch of important people.

The first reference to the rattlesnake was made in a satirical commentary by that smart and funny guy, Ben Franklin twenty five years earlier. Four years later he used a picture of a snake cut into eight sections, representing the colonies, with the message Join or Die; the original political cartoon.

Wild Bill, fun and informative.

Footnote:
*A habit he picked up from his old man

3 comments:

Dawn in Austin said...

The Marine is a plethora of historical trivia. He loves to share his knowledge, whether we ask or not.

Love the fact that Wild Bill saves the flags that are incorrectly displayed. One of my pet peeves.

Meg at the Members Lounge said...

I am very impressed Susan's son bestowed a historical gift upon his uncle. There is a sign of thoughtrfulness.

Kathryn said...

You just scared me, for a minute I thought Wild Bill hi-jacked your BlaGH.