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Gadsden, Alabama (U.S.)

Last modified: 2006-08-26 by rick wyatt
Keywords: gadsden | alabama | sansom | emma sansom |
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[Gadsden flag, Alabama] image by António Martins-Tuválkin, 11 November 2005

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Description of the flag

A vertical green-yellow-green triband with the city seal centered.
Al Kirsch, 28 August 2005

Gadsden is where I grew up and I can confirm that the city flag is a green-yellow-green tri-color with the city logo on the yellow stripe. The logo depicts a statue of Emma Sansom (more on her later), an industrial and an agricultural scene. During the Civil War union raiders would dash into parts of north Alabama and north Georgia from areas they controlled in an attempt to disrupt the confederate supply lines and destroy war related industry. The areas in and around Gadsden are rich in coal and iron ore and became important in the production of cannon and thus were a target for those raids. Owing to the importance of the area a trap was set for the raiders by confederate general Nathan Bedford Forrest. During a subsequent raid into the area the trap was sprung but following heavy fighting the union forces were able break off the engagement and make good their escape. Fleeing north through Gadsden the raiders burned the bridge that crosses the Coosa River, which runs through the center of town, in an attempt to slow Forrest pursuit. This is where Emma Sansom comes into the story. Being a local girl, she knew the area well and was able to show Forrest's men where to ford the river and thus keep up the chase and inflict many casualties on the raiders. She became a heroine to the local people. The statue of her, as shown on the city logo, sets on the spot where it is said that with outstretched arm she showed the way.
Michael Chastain, 18 October 2002

City Seal

image located from Gadsden City site