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  #1  
Old 06-02-2009, 11:26 PM
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AyatollahGondola AyatollahGondola is offline
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Default Historic Sutter's Fort Changes Mexican Flag

After leaving the Home Depot under upbeat circumstances today, I drove my usual route towards the State capitol. Upon passing a familiar landmark, Sutter's Fort, Something looked amiss. I stopped and examined for a minute and confirmed that the usual Mexican flag was not on the flagpole inside the fort. This flag looked markedly different in size and type. I went to the office at the entrance and asked the girls if the flag had been changed, and they stated that it in fact had. The current version of the Mexican flag has been replaced with the historic version of the Mexican flag of the period when Sutter's Fort was in operation back in the mid 1800's. I asked if this was just for an event, since on certain special occasions, different flags are hoisted just for the day. They relayed to me that no, this was a permanent change for the Fort. For those of you that may not be familiar with this effort, Several of us as individuals and as members of groups have held protests, written letters, and made phone calls to authorities over the issue of the current version of the Mexican flag being flown over this historic US and California landmark, as it symbolizes that the fort is under the dominion of Mexico. Once again, I am happy to relish in this victory, even not knowing the complete story that led to the change. While I'm certain that each of you that participated in the effort to remove Mexico's flag from the fort had an impact, I am drafting a request, both formal and informal to discover the facts. In the interim, conjure up the memories of Americans that stood up for the forgotten soldiers of the Mexican American war by holding our California and American flags, signs, and pamphlets for passers-by to see as we stood in the pouring rain, cold, all the while being denigrated by those who still feel that this state belongs to Mexico.
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  #2  
Old 06-03-2009, 02:38 PM
REWHBLCAIN REWHBLCAIN is offline
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I have a NAU trucking company down the road from me and the removed the Mexican flag and replaced it with A symle like you see on the Swiss army knives. So now it has a Canada,American and a Swiss army knife flag. I took a video but don't yet know how to down load it from my phone, Maybe some day. lol

Last edited by REWHBLCAIN : 06-03-2009 at 02:41 PM.
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  #3  
Old 06-03-2009, 06:29 PM
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AyatollahGondola AyatollahGondola is offline
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I spoke with the person who ordered the change,

He is somewhat new, and claims that he felt the 2009 mexican flag was not appropriate, and sought out a more fitting version of the mexican flag that reflected the fort at that time period. He said the decision was made and the change happened without notification, press release, or any other fanfare because flying foreign flags on American soil can become a rather contentious issue. I thanked him for the change and explained our position. He did say he would send me a confirming letter sometime soon.
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Old 06-03-2009, 08:59 PM
Coso Kid Coso Kid is offline
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This is good news and shows what keeping some pressure on does.
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Old 06-03-2009, 09:08 PM
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Now, how to rub our victory in the faces of our opponents? I was thinking a small party out front of the fort; something like that....
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Old 06-04-2009, 09:18 AM
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AyatollahGondola AyatollahGondola is offline
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Here is the reply I recieved from the person responsible for the change:


Quote:
Hi Mr. Rodrigues—



We just spoke on the phone, and you asked for an email that would explain the flag change at Sutter’s Fort.



We recently changed the flag that flies inside the fort from the current Mexican flag to the 1830’s “Maritime” Mexican flag to be consistent with what flew inside the fort during the period we interpret, 1830-1850.

Based on historic records of the period, it’s probable that Captain Sutter flew this flag rather than the formal Mexican flag, because this part of California was a remote part of the Mexico , somewhat far from other civil authorities, and Sutter’s primary contact with Mexican officials would have been through trade ships coming to Sutter’s Landing north of the Fort. None of the Sutter records we can find specifically talk about the flag, but this would be consistent with the way Captain Sutter conducted business. The current (2009) Mexican flag is similar, but not identical to the 1830s “formal” flag, and I understand that several people more familiar with the flag than I am had previously noticed the discrepancy.



I don’t know all of the contemporary history while the Fort has been a State Park about flags that have flown inside the Park, but in general, we try and follow guidelines in our current General Plan. The Plan calls for us to interpret the history of the Fort just before California became part of the United States , and conduct interpretive and educational activities consistent with that period. This means having activities and a generally accurate setting of what existed between 1830 and 1850. This isn’t entirely possible for many reasons, but to the extent that we can, this is what we strive for.



Part of maintaining the detailed accuracy of that period is the use of contemporary objects or replicas, and to have physical infrastructure that is as close to the period as possible without compromising safety and health needs. An example of this would be trash cans inside wooden enclosures, or the use of some electric lighting designed not to be obvious to most visitors. The attention to this level of detail can be somewhat complicated and expensive, and even in the case of the Mexican flag, it’s not as simple as you might think.



For instance, we could not find a vendor who could provide an historically accurate copy of this flag, so we had to purchase muslin and one of our docents graciously volunteered a lot of time to dye and assemble the Muslin into the proper flag. We then replaced the flagpole’s rope with a hemp rope, which is historically consistent with the 1830s period, but we are aware that the top pulley is not correct for the time period, and as time and budget allow, we will find a way to place the proper pulley in place so that nearly everything associated with the flag is correct for the period. There are many other things in this regard, but changing the flag was a visible and important change that everyone agreed should be done.



If you have any questions about this, please feel free to contact me.



Director of Public Programs

Railroad/History Sector
CA State Parks
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  #7  
Old 06-04-2009, 08:40 PM
Dawes Dawes is offline
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Now to get the General plan to follow early U.S. history with a Bear Flag....hmmm
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Old 06-05-2009, 02:55 PM
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Here's a still of the new flag. Notice that it has no crest. Resembles the flag of Italy now.

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Old 06-06-2009, 08:05 AM
Rim05 Rim05 is offline
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Thanks AG. It is good to see your work paying off.
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  #10  
Old 06-06-2009, 08:09 AM
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AyatollahGondola AyatollahGondola is offline
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It's not just me RIM,

This effort was one that included people from several of the minutemen groups, SOS, and Fight Back, as well as non aligned persons. It was a universal mission.
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