City switches Confederate flags

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, October 5, 1999

A new version of the Confederate flag is flying over the Natchez Visitor Reception Center.

The Confederate battle flag, which was officially the Confederate naval jack, is being replaced with the first Confederate national flag, known as &uot;the Stars and Bars.&uot;

Mayor Larry L. &uot;Butch&uot; Brown said the city has been working on getting a new flag for several months.

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In recent weeks, a local minister had complained to Brown about the battle flag. The Rev. C.R. Jackson said the flag was offensive to him and to other members of the black community.

&uot;We had already been proactive is our efforts to deal with the flag situation,&uot; Brown said. &uot;Those of us in city government don’t consider it an issue. There are other things to worry about that dealing with symbolism.&uot;

Brown said problems with the Confederate flag in South Carolina and in other parts of Mississippi prompted the city to consider changing the flag.

The previous Confederate flag will be retired and given to the Sons of the Confederacy.

Brown said changing the flag was an executive act on his part, and would be ratified later by the board of aldermen. The Confederate flag in city council chambers will also be changed.

The Confederate flag is one of seven flying above the Colonnade next to the visitor center. The U.S. flag, British flag, Spanish flag, Mississippi flag, French flag and Natchez flag also fly there.

&uot;Our interest is to be certain that we have those banners that represent the governments and the political history of Natchez,&uot; Brown said.