18th Georgia Infantry Regiment ANV Style 12-Star Battle Flag
History of the 18th Georgia Infantry Regiment Square Battle Flag
The 1st battle flag carried by the 18th Georgia Infantry was probably a “1st National style” flag but there are no known records as to the whereabouts of that flag or what happened to it. The 18th received this “1st bunting issue Army of Northern Virginia” (ANV) square battle flag in May of 1862 after the Battle of Eltham’s Landing. It only had 12 stars because, at the time of production, the Confederacy had not yet recognized Kentucky as a Confederate state. The flag was very similar to the battle flag of Nathan Bedford Forrest’s Cavalry Regiment as well as the 1st Texas Infantry Regiment which was brigaded with the 18th Georgia (Hood’s Texas Brigade). They both probably received their battle flags at about the same time. It is said that a rip in the top corner of the flag was repaired by using a lock of hair of a soldier from the 5th New York Zouaves who was killed while attempting to capture it. This “1st Bunting Issue” flag was carried until May of 1863 when it was removed from service and they were issued a new “3rd Bunting Issue Flag”. The “1st Bunting Issue” flag is in the possession of a private collector.
The 18th Georgia was organized at Camp Brown in Cobb County Georgia April 22nd, 1861, and was originally designated “First Regiment, Fourth Brigade, State Troops”. The regiment was composed of 10 companies which totaled roughly 750 men. After two months of training at Camp Brown, the 4th Brigade was broken up, and the 1st Regiment was redesignated “18th Georgia Infantry Regiment Volunteers” and sent north to Virginia where they briefly served guarding Union prisoners in Richmond after the 1st Battle of Manassas. In November 1861, the 18th Georgia was brigaded with the 1st, 4th, and 5th Texas Infantry Regiments to form a full Texas brigade. After the battle of Seven Pines, Hampton’s Legion of South Carolina was also attached to the Texas Brigade which became known as “Hood’s Texas Brigade”. The 18th Georgia along with their Texas and South Carolina compatriots distinguished themselves as one of the hardest fighting and most effective brigades (Union or Confederate) in any theatre of the entire Civil War. At the Battle of Gaine’s Mill, the brigade succeeded in breaking a heavily fortified Union line thus becoming a major factor in compelling the Union forces to retreat back towards the Chickahominy River and give up on capturing the City of Richmond. Two months later, the 18th Georgia distinguished itself once again at the 2nd Battle of Manassas where they captured the battle flags of both the 24th and 10th New York Infantries and then went on to capture a battery of four Federal cannon and virtually wiped out the 5th New York Zouaves in the process. After the Battle of Antietam in September of 1862, General Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia underwent a general reorganization and the 18th Georgia was reassigned to Cobb’s Georgia Brigade during the process. The 18th was subsequently engaged in the major battles of Fredricksburg, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, The Wilderness, Cold Harbor, Spotsylvania Courthouse, The Siege of Petersburg, Sayler’s Creek, and Appomattox Courthouse where they along with the rest of Lee’s army were surrendered on April 9th, 1865. There were less than 60 men left fit for duty at the time of surrender. They were also involved in dozens of other battles and skirmishes during the same time period.
This is a reproduction of the 18th Georgia Infantry Regiment Battle Flag. The actual dimensions and materials are not exactly the same as the original flag. The artwork is visible on both sides.
- One solid piece of printed, hemmed fabric
- Lightweight, 100-denier polyester that will fly nicely in the slightest breeze.
- Bright colors
- 4 rows of stitching on the fly end to prevent premature fraying
- Reinforced header with brass grommets
- Flag size: 4′ x 4′