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My American Revolutionary War research has led to an investigation of the Sons of Liberty (SAR). This organization was known to erect Liberty Poles (see picture) as a way of angering Britain in a show of independence, but also when they called meetings.

They were wooden poles with a "Liberty Hat" or ribbon on top. They were also a way of replacing the then famous "Liberty Trees" for meetings if no large tree was available.

The most notable one was erected after the repeal of the Stamp Act in New York City in 1766.

I am curious if any are still standing today or exist in commemorative places (or even museums) in the US?

Picture 1

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    Given the lifetime of a typical telephone pole where I live, a 240 year old wooden pole standing somewhere seems highly unlikely. – T.E.D. Aug 23 '17 at 20:12
  • Right but some of them were much larger than poles. One account the pole was made from the mast of a captured ship. I'm more looking for a commemorative statue or place they may put them to be more protected – The_MN_MechE Aug 23 '17 at 20:28
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I couldn't find any reference to a surviving Liberty Pole (probably not surprising after 240 years!), but apparently, the last surviving Liberty Tree was in Annapolis. It was cut down in 1999.

I found another site that claims the wood from that tree was used to make a new Liberty Pole which was erected in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania.

  • This is what I am looking for:) Good find! – The_MN_MechE Aug 23 '17 at 20:57
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Yes, Libery Poles still exist today, although in a slightly different form. They were the precursor of what we now call flagpoles.

Most flagpoles are now made of metal, rather than wood, and are therefore more durable. But they are places on which to hang flags, which function as our symbols of freedom and liberty.

So have liberty poles retained their original form? Not quite. But do they exist in an "evolved" form that serves the original purpose? Yes.

  • Tom that was deep. Never thought about it like that. – The_MN_MechE Aug 24 '17 at 3:38
  • @The_MN_MechE: Deep questions deserve deep answers. – Tom Au Aug 24 '17 at 3:44
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    Haven't flagpoles been around for like forever? – Felix Goldberg Aug 24 '17 at 6:44

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