A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from May 26, 2008
Birthplace of the Lone Star Flag (Montgomery slogan)

The city of Montgomery (in Montgomery County) claims the slogan of “Birthplace of the Lone Star Flag.” In 1839, Montgomery resident Charles Bellinger Tate Stewart served on a committee To design a New Texas flag, and it’s claimed that Stewart drew the “lone star” design himself.

The “lone star” flag facts are disputed (some say that Texas State Senator William H. Wharton designed the flag), but not by the city of Montgomery.


Wikipedia: Montgomery, Texas
Montgomery is a city located in Montgomery County, Texas. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 489. It is considered by many to be the birthplace of the Lone Star Flag of Texas. The town of Montgomery was founded by W. W. Shepperd in July, 1837 on 200 acres of land that had originally been part of the John Corner League. Montgomery became the first county seat of Montgomery County on March 1, 1838.

The Official Site of Montgomery County, Texas Government
MONTGOMERY COUNTY
Birthplace of the Lone Star Flag

Montgomery, TX
Welcome to Montgomery, TX!
The City of Montgomery is one of the oldest cities in Texas and many consider it to be the “birthplace of the Texas flag”. Despite its relatively small footprint of one square mile, more than 30,000 people in the surrounding communities consider themselves residents of the historic town of Montgomery.

Historic Montgomery, Texas - History of the Lone Star Flag
The Lone Star Flag of Texas first rose in Montgomery - or at least the idea of it did. It was a product of the vision of Dr. Charles Bellinger Stewart, a Montgomery postmaster and pharmacist and the first Secretary of State for the Republic of Texas.

Dr. Stewart was appointed by Republic of Texas President Mirabeau B. Lamar to a committee with Thomas Barnett and Richard Ellis to create an official flag for the Republic. Dr. Stewart sketched on vellum three rectangles of equal size, one vertical and the others horizontal. In the vertical rectangle he placed a lone star. The original drawing was not colored but Dr. Stewart labeled the rectangles blue, white and red. These colors signify loyalty, purity and bravery.

The committee approved the flag design as well as the Republic seal which Stewart had drawn on the same piece of vellum. President Lamar approved both on January 25, 1839. When Texas became a state in 1845, the seal was modified and adopted as the state seal, along with the adoption of the Lone Star Flag as the state flag. The N.H. Davis Pioneer Complex & Museum in Montgomery has a replica of this vellum on display. The original is housed at the Texas State Archives.

The House of Representatives of the 75th Texas Legislature adopted House Resolution #1123, which was then signed by then Governor George Bush on May 30, 1997, proclaiming Montgomery County as Birthplace of the Lone Star Flag. Today, the flag is flown proudly in Montgomery as a symbol of the strength, aspiration, bravery and loyalty of Texas’ early settlers.

Handbook of Texas Online
STEWART, CHARLES BELLINGER TATE (1806-1885). Charles Stewart, signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence, was born in Charleston, South Carolina, on February 6, 1806, to Charles and Adrianna (Bull) Stewart.
(...)
In 1839 he served on the committee appointed by the Third Congress of the republic to design a new state flag. Stewart is credited with drawing the original draft of the Lone Star flag.

Wikipedia: Flag of Texas
The flag of Texas is defined by law as follows:

“The state flag consists of a rectangle with a width to length ratio of two to three containing: (1) a blue vertical stripe one-third the entire length of the flag wide, and two equal horizontal stripes, the upper stripe white, the lower red, each two-thirds the entire length of the flag long; and (2) a white, regular five-pointed star in the center of the blue stripe, oriented so that one point faces upward, and of such a size that the diameter of a circle passing through the five points of the star is equal to three-fourths the width of the blue stripe. The red and blue of the state flag are the same colors used in the United States flag.”

The Texas flag is known as the “Lone Star Flag” (giving Texas its nickname of the “Lone Star State"). This flag was introduced to the Congress of the Republic of Texas on December 28, 1838, by Senator William H. Wharton. It was adopted on January 24, 1839 as the final national flag of the Republic of Texas.

When Texas became the 28th state of the Union on December 29, 1845, its national flag became the state flag. Texas law assigns the following symbolism to the colors of the Texas flag: blue stands for loyalty, white for purity, and red for bravery.The official Pantone shades for the Texas flag are 193 (red) and 281 (dark blue).

The Burnet Flag
The Lone Star Flag replaced the previous national flag (known as the Burnet Flag), which had been adopted on December 10, 1836. It consisted of an azure background with a large golden star, inspired by the 1810 “Bonnie Blue Flag” of the Republic of West Florida. Variants of the Burnet Flag with a white star, virtually identical to the Bonnie Blue Flag, were also common. 

Handbook of Texas Online
FLAGS OF TEXAS. The strong Texas interest in flags is shown in public and private displays of the “Six Flags Over Texas,” i.e., the flags of the six countries that have ruled over Texas: the Kingdom of France, the Kingdom of Spain, the Mexican Federal Republic, the Republic of Texas, the Confederate States of America, and the United States of America.
(...)
The Lone Star Flag was adopted by the Texas Congress in 1839: “[T]he national flag of Texas shall consist of a blue perpendicular stripe of the width of one third of the whole length of the flag, with a white star of five points in the centre thereof, and two horizontal stripes of equal breadth, the upper stripe white, the lower red, of the length of two thirds of the whole length of the flag.” Senator William H. Wharton introduced a bill on December 28, 1838, containing the flag’s design, and the bill was referred to a committee consisting of Senator Oliver Jones and two unnamed senators. This committee reported a substitute bill embodying the flag design introduced by Wharton, and the substitute bill was passed by the Congress on January 21, 1839 and approved by President Mirabeau B. Lamar on January 25, 1839. Official art for the Lone Star Flag was drawn by Peter Krag and approved by President Lamar. The actual designer of the Lone Star Flag is unknown, but it could have been Wharton. The Lone Star Flag was the legal national and state flag from January 25, 1839, to September 1, 1879, and the de facto state flag from September 1, 1879, to August 31, 1933. The Lone Star Flag was also the legal national ensign from January 25, 1839, to December 29, 1845. The Sixteenth Legislature promulgated the Revised Civil Statutes of 1879 and provided that “all civil statutes, of a general nature, in force when the Revised Statutes take effect, and which are not included herein, or which are not hereby expressly continued in force, are hereby repealed.” Since the 1879 revised statutes neither included legislation concerning the flag nor expressly continued in force the 1839 flag law, the 1839 law was repealed. Texas therefore had no legal flag from the date of the repeal, September 1, 1879, to the effective date of the 1933 flag act, August 31, 1933. The Mexican National Museum of Artillery has two revolutionary Lone Star flags, one dating from 1836 and the other from 1835 to 1837. Both of these flags display the red stripe over the white stripe, but otherwise resemble the 1839 national flag.

9 January 1839, Telegraph and Texas Register (Houston, TX), pg. 2:
An act amending an act entitled an act adopting a national seal and standard for the Republic of Texas, approved on the 10th December, 1836.
(...)
Sec. 3. Be it further enacted, That from and after the passage of this act, the national standard of Texas shall consist of a blue perpendicular stripe, of the width of one third of the whole breadth of the flag, with a white star of five points in the centre thereof, and of two horizontal stripes of equal breadth, the upper stripes white, the lower read, of the length of two-thirds of the whole length of the flag, any thing in the act to which this is an amendment, to the contrary notwithstanding.

Dallas (TX) Morning News
Allegiance to the flag
Who drew Texas’ banner? Family is sure; experts aren’t

Author: BRIAN ANDERSON Dallas Web Staff
Publish Date: October 5, 2003
Pat Spackey of Dallas has grown up with tales of her great-great-great-grandfather’s role in the early days of the fledgling nation that would eventually become the 28th state.

A signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence, first secretary of state for the Republic of Texas, frontier physician and pharmacist, pioneer in the study of ultraviolet rays - Dr. Charles B. Stewart really did do it all.

He was also a philanthropist, postmaster, deputy sheriff, district…

The Daily Flag
The Lone Star Flag of Texas
Mar 6th, 2007 by Deborah Hendrick
The state flag of Texas is one of the most recognized flags in the United States, and in the world. But the Lone Star flag of Texas today is not the same flag that flew over the Alamo—where 171 years ago today (March 6, 1836), the thirteen-day siege ended in a violent dawn attack.

It was a few years before the design so highly esteemed today was agreed upon by the legislators of the Republic of Texas. The historical records reveal a lot about the new flag, but not the name of the person who created the design.

Texas flags with a single star had long been a favorite symbol. On December 28, 1838, Senator William H. Wharton submitted a bill to the senate with a description for a proposed flag: The national flag of Texas shall consist of a blue perpendicular stripe of the width of one third of the whole length of the flag, with a white star of five points in the centre thereof, and two horizontal striped of equal breadth, the upper stripe white, the lower red. Of the length of two thirds of the whole length of the flag.

On January 4, 1839 a senate committee paid $10 to Austin artist Peter Krag create a color drawing of the proposed flag, and by January 25th, President Mirabeau B. Lamar signed the bill and the Republic of Texas had a new flag that flies unchanged to this day.
(...)
10 Shawn Sedoff
on 04 Apr 2008 at 6:14 pm
To anyone who has been following the question about the designer of the Texas State Flag, I sent the above information to the Texas State Library and Archives in Austin. Today I received the following response:

“Dear M. Sedoff:

Your message concerning the designer of the Lone Star flag was received by the staff of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission.

The debate over who actually designed the flag has been going on for quite some time. Perhaps the most authoritative article on the subject is in the article on Texas flags in the Handbook of Texas Online:
http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/FF/msf1.html

In it, Charles A. Spain, Jr., an authority on flags, discusses the 1839 flag question in some detail. Unfortunately, during the renovation of the building our book collection, including the House and Senate Journals have been moved to offsite, deep storage and will not be available for some time for reference work. However, you can check with the State Law Library for possible text of Committee appointments and reports for the session:
http://www.sll.state.tx.us

Mr. Spain has done considerable research into the matter, both in our holdings and elsewhere in order to try to resolve the issue.

The Charles Bellinger Stewart Papers in our holdings does contain a piece of paper that has a penciled drawing of the flag, colored by what appears to be crayon. Lamar’s signature is penciled in “upside down” at the top of the drawing, just as it is on the official engraving attached to the statute copy of the Act. Over the years there has been great controversy whether this is actually Stewart’s own drawing or one simply traced from the Krag engraving (since the dimensions are identical and the placement of the signature is also the same in location and orientation). No one has been able to make a authoritative decision if the drawing is authentically Stewart’s.

The page reproduced on our Texas Treasures Web site shows the engraving of the flag and seal made by Peter Krag. We have no other information on Krag. This is the “official” design–the one signed into law (upside down) by President Lamar–and it and the other Navy standards also authorized by this legislation and drawn by Krag are bound with text of the law.

We hope this information will be helpful to you.

Archives Services Staff/jc ”

Posted by Barry Popik
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • (0) Comments • Monday, May 26, 2008 • Permalink