Tuesday, March 12, 2013

An apron for St. Patricks Day Parade, in honor of The Irish Brigade

The Saint Patrick's Day Parade is this Saturday in Salt Lake City.  I didn't think I would be able to go because Matt has a huge bull sale that day.  He is selling a few bulls and its a big day for him.  I offered my support to go with him.  Last night when we were discussing our plans, he told me that although it will be an important day for him, he will be busy and at the sale all day and then has to AI some cattle later that evening.  Well, that was all I needed to hear.  I came to the conclusion that offering my support was appreciated, but neither of us really wanted me and our 4 offspring there with him!  Perfect, now said offspring and I will be able to go to the parade with our Fort Douglas Museum Living History Detachment group.

The Irish have a great history in the American Civil War. Click here if you want to read a bit about it.  The most well known of the Irish is The Irish Brigade, and within that, the 69th and 63rd New York Regiments.  They were there for the First Battle of Bull Run and actually were formed as a militia unit before the civil war even began.  The "Fighting 69th" were known for their bravery during WWI and the unit fought in Baghdad in 2004 and 2005.  There is a fantastic monument at Gettysburg raised in honor of the Irish Brigade, as well as at Antietam.

 Hopefully today I get to sew.  I want to make a patriotic apron to wear to the parade this Saturday.  The picture below from Harper's Weekly shows a patriotic apron that was made and worn by many sweet gals during the civil war to show their support.  This one below would have been red and white on the bottom, just like the Confederate flag, and then the blue with the stars on the bib part of the apron, would have varied between 7 and 15 stars, depending on the time of the war and how many states were being represented as part of the Confederacy.

This one is an original and is in The Museum of the Confederacy in Richmond, VA.  It is a circa 1861-1865, Confederate apron, made & worn by a young girl, Martha L. Booton. Made out of scraps from a flag created for soldiers from Page County. Cotton cloth apron features a blue bib with seven five-pointed stars; skirt has alternating bars of red & white cotton. Composition mimics the flag adopted by the Confederacy in 1861.

This sweet reenacting gal has made a gorgeous patriotic apron.  I love the stars on the medici belt portion of the apron.  Once again, it is a Confederate apron by the obvious two red bars and one white bar on the bottom portion, and the amount of stars on the belt portion.

This apron is a Union apron.  That is obvious by the amount of stars on the top bib portion, and the multiple red and white stripes on the bottom portion.  In May 1861 the women of Clear Spring, Maryland began wearing Union aprons: “The bib is studded with stars, the skirt streaked with stripes, and warm, true, brave hearts, beating under all.”

So my challenge for the next few days is to make an apron to wear to the Saint Patrick's Day parade.  I think I will use the flag of the 69th Regiment as my muse!

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