It's that time of year when driving past the Belton Courthouse grounds you may be surprised to look up and see the old Stars and Bars flying high atop the flag pole.

That's because January 19th is Confederate Heroes Day in Texas. The original Confederate flag is flown next to the Confederate statue and has done so since the early 1990s. The local Sons of Confederate Veterans place the flag. Contrary to what people see in the movies and on TV, the video below is the official flag flown in Virginia and throughout the Confederacy from 1861 to 1863.

The flag was replaced in 1863 for a number of reasons including the mishaps at the Battle of Bull Run that saw soldiers on both sides mistake the enemy's flag for their own because the 2 flags looked the same when they hung limply on the battlefield. The more popular version of the Confederate flag you see on tv shows (Dukes of Hazard, etc) came later.

Confederate Heroes Day has been a state holiday since 1973. The Temple Daily Telegram says Bell County Judge David Blackburn said as long as the state recognizes the holiday the local government allows an outside group not affiliated with the government to raise and lower the flag in Belton, Texas.

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