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Saturday, 26 February 2011

Anniversary of the Orange Free State Flag.

The anniversary of the Orange Free State flag was a few days ago & a few months ago I found the best picture of it online. The flag in the picture is slightly incorrect as there is supposed to be another white stripe / bar. The Orange Free State Republic flag was designed 155 years ago & was adopted on February 23 1857 on the third anniversary of the Orange Free State Republic.

Note to first time learners: the Orange Free State was a Boer Republic established between the Orange & Vaal Rivers in southern Africa [ today known as the Free State Province of the Republic of South Africa ] on February 23 1854 as a result of the Orange River Convention. The northern portion of the Orange Free State was where the Winburg Republic [ which used a red saltire on a blue background as a flag ] was located which was established by Hendrik Potgieter & his followers during the era of the Great Trek. The Orange Free State Republic flag is said to have been loosely modeled on the design of the United States of America flag. The red / white & blue horizontal tri colour in the canton was the first Boer Republican flag ever adopted as it was the flag adopted for the short lived Graaff-Reinet Republic of 1795 - 1796 as well as the flag of the even shorter lived Swellendam Republic of 1795. The orange stripes are said to represent the Orange River. The Orange Free State was conquered by the British at the conclusion of the second Anglo-Boer War. This flag was depicted in the popular De la Rey video of Bok van Blerk which was depicting the Bitter Ender phase of the second Anglo-Boer War. The flag was & is one of the numerous Boer Republic flags on display within the Cenotaph Chamber at the Voortrekker Monument at Pretoria atop Monument Hill & is a popular symbol of the Boer folk.


Ron. said...

The Boers are said to have chosen the red / white & blue design to symbolize their break with VOC domination but it is also said that they choose those colours to affirm a connection to Holland [ or rather perhaps to capitalize on Dutch support as they would court later in the 19th cent when establishing their major republics ] despite the fact that the Boers are mainly not of Dutch decent.