“Western Union” officially relaunches after restoration
The restorers of Key West’s flagship schooner celebrated the ship’s relaunch last week with a lot of Conch Republic pride. In the slide show, you’ll see the officers of the Conch Republic navy. The republic’s Admiral and First Sea Lord Finbar Gittelman said a few words and afterward all true Conchs and even Freshwater Conchs in attendance pledged allegiance to the flag—after the flag was turned right-side up that is.
“I pledge allegiance to the flag of my Tiny Islands Nation,” the crowd said, mumbling after the announcer. “And to the Republic for which it stands, one nation under the sun, indivincible, where the liberty is true, and the justice is divine.”
The conch-blower sounded his signal amid loud applause. Bill bestowed a lei he’d made from plumeria blooms and one of the tall ships’ crew hung it on the boom.
The crew also hoisted a brand-new Conch Republic flag to replace its faded one and the motto “we seceded when others failed” fluttered in the wind.