Project Appleseed

Appleseed Welcome Center => History => Topic started by: Mrs. Smith on May 02, 2021, 06:17:17 PM

Title: Flag of the Month May 2021 - Pine Tree Flag
Post by: Mrs. Smith on May 02, 2021, 06:17:17 PM
Good Morning! Welcome to the May edition of Flag of the Month!

This month’s flag is the Pine Tree flag also commonly known as the “Appeal to Heaven” flag.  The term Pine Tree flag is a generic name for a number of flags used by the New England and Massachusetts colonies from 1686 to 1778.  The Pine Tree had been a popular symbol of American independence in New England for years. 

When Britain had limited forest resources, they looked elsewhere for more resources to build ships. One of the areas they looked to was Colonial New England.  Under the Mast Preservation Clause in the Massachusetts Charter in 1691, Britain laid claim to any white pine measuring 24 inches in diameter or greater, and in 1722 a law passed in New Hampshire made it illegal to cut down white pines measuring 12 inches or more. The “mast pines”, as they were named for their suitability as single-stick masts and booms, were identified by a Surveyor of the King’s Woods, and marked with a broad arrow for exporting to England.  The colonists resented the restrictions on the timber they used for their needs and livelihoods, and many continued to harvest the marked trees. The law caused more anger and backlash than the Stamp Act or even the Tea Tax, and eventually resulted in the Pine Tree Riot, also called the Mast Tree Riot, of 1772.

After being fined and refusing to pay for harvesting trees marked with the broad arrow, a New Hampshire mill owner, along with other mill owners and townsmen, assaulted the Sheriff and his Deputy by lashing them with tree switches, cutting off their horses’ ears, manes and tails, and forcing them out of town through a jeering crowd.  Occurring almost two years prior to the more well-known Boston Tea Party, the Pine Tree Riot was one of the first acts of forceful resistance against British royal authority by the American colonists, and among the disputes that culminated in the American Revolution.


There were many flags during the Revolutionary War time frame that had a pine tree on them.  One of he flags was used by George Washington on a squadron of six schooners which he outfitted at his own expense in the fall of 1775. This flag was a variation of the New England Pine Tree flag. The Continental Navy, knowing they were up against the greatest naval power in the world, set sail flying a flag with an “APPEAL TO HEAVEN.”  Unfortunately, there is controversy over the placement of the words, appearance of the trees and leaves, direction of branches, etc. It leaves us with many possible versions of these flags. 

Massachusetts is one of three states with its own naval ensign, the others being South Carolina and Maine.  In April 1776, the Massachusetts Navy adopted as its flag (naval ensign) a white field charged with a green pine tree.  It also flew this flag over the floating batteries which sailed down the Charles River to attack the British in the Siege of Boston. This naval militia was active during most of the Revolutionary War.  Unlike most other states, the Massachusetts State Navy was never officially disbanded and simply became part of the United States Navy.

Trivia
1. What kind of Tree was the Masts of the USS Constitution made from?

2. The "Boogerman Pine”, at an estimated 207 feet tall where is the tallest White Pine tree located?

3. Approximately how many masts were shipped from Portsmouth, New Hampshire?
Title: Re: Flag of the Month May 2021 - Pine Tree Flag
Post by: cornhskr on May 09, 2021, 02:24:58 AM
Redmond, WA representing flag of the month this weekend.

(https://i.imgur.com/KDuJXXy.jpg)
Title: Re: Flag of the Month May 2021 - Pine Tree Flag
Post by: GTEngineer on May 09, 2021, 02:40:37 AM
Sounds like someone's telling the "optional history" on that flag tomorrow!  :F  ;)

Redmond, WA representing flag of the month this weekend.

(https://i.imgur.com/KDuJXXy.jpg)
Title: Re: Flag of the Month May 2021 - Pine Tree Flag
Post by: Mrs. Smith on May 09, 2021, 07:48:35 AM
That's awesome, GT!!
Title: Re: Flag of the Month May 2021 - Pine Tree Flag
Post by: GTEngineer on May 10, 2021, 01:51:30 AM
That's awesome, GT!!

That was all Cornhskr's idea.  In fact we did incorporate the flag's history during lunch, I think this is a nice addition as an optional history block.  Many of the flags on our April shirts are familiar to people, but few know the story behind those flags.
Title: Re: Flag of the Month May 2021 - Pine Tree Flag
Post by: Mrs. Smith on May 10, 2021, 07:42:01 AM
That's awesome, GT!!

That was all Cornhskr's idea.  In fact we did incorporate the flag's history during lunch, I think this is a nice addition as an optional history block.  Many of the flags on our April shirts are familiar to people, but few know the story behind those flags.

That was kind of the thought process behind doing these month posts. One of my students in NM asked about the flags, knew about the state FB page, and suggested it would be a fun monthly post. I did a couple, then National leadership asked how I felt about doing the series on the National page. How could I say no??

That student now wears an Orange hat and writes the flag posts for me every month. Mahamotorworks deserves the credit  :)
Title: Re: Flag of the Month May 2021 - Pine Tree Flag
Post by: cornhskr on May 11, 2021, 12:15:41 AM
That's awesome, GT!!





That student now wears an Orange hat and writes the flag posts for me every month. Mahamotorworks deserves the credit  :)


Yes.  Maha is an acquaintance of mine.  When I saw you guys implement the program, I wanted to follow suit at any of the shoots I attend.
Title: Re: Flag of the Month May 2021 - Pine Tree Flag
Post by: Mrs. Smith on May 11, 2021, 09:45:27 AM
So cool  :cool2: