Dating back to the War for Independence, the Gadsden flag has long been a symbol of America's opposition to tyranny. Named after its designer, Gen. Christopher Gadsden, the Gadsden flag was first used in 1775 as the personal standard for the flagship of the Continental Navy. Use of the rattlesnake symbolism originated with Benjamin Franklin's famous "Join, or Die" political cartoon in 1754. Franklin later explained why he chose the rattlesnake to symbolize the American spirit:
"She never begins an attack, nor, when once engaged, ever surrenders: She is therefore an emblem of magnanimity and true courage. ... she never wounds till she has generously given notice, even to her enemy, and cautioned him against the danger of stepping on her.—Was I wrong, Sir, in thinking this a strong picture of the temper and conduct of America?"
Today, the flag has become a favorite of those who still believe in the liberties our Founding Fathers fought and died for. Display your love for freedom and declare to the world, "Don't Tread On Me".
Printed on the front of a military green shirt.