I retired 2 yrs ago and now have more time to research history. Like I told you on the phone, I'm the gg grandson of Gen. E. Kirby-Smith and look a lot like him at 40 yrs. In my research travels I found out about the event at the Rio Grande and our Battle Flag. I've read several different accounts of the event and have found the account by Edwards to be the most accurate. It's funny, I was initially interested in the event thinking Kirby Smith was with Shelby. But found out he crossed at Eagle Pass June 26, 1865. While Shelby crossed July 4, 1865. I have found the ceremony on July 4 to be a moving, patriotic and historically important. Being that the Fourth is a family event and Eagle Pass isn't the coolest place to be; never the less, that's when it happened. We are re creating the original event with limited compatriots, keeping to Edwards account. I will be acting in Gen. Shelby's place with black plume. We are staging another event after. It is an idea i've had since learning about this. Maybe it's my Christian upbringing and faith but I can't help but think of the Battle Flag and our righteous cause with that view. John the Baptist bringing the Holy Spirit into a new soul in a river. Christ rising from the dead to everlasting life. Anyway, what we are going to do is bring the Battle Flag that Shelby's five cols. laid gently on the bottom of the River, up into the light again, to fly once again for Freedom.
In light of the recent events involving the Flag that we all love; and the attack on the South. Rather than shy away we should all stand strong and together in the defence of the real America. DV
Your obedient servant,
Texas John Slaughter #2074
Tombstone, Arizona Territory, CSA