Posted by Bob on March 17, 2000
In Reply to: My stars and bars! posted by Patty on March 17, 2000
: : "Stars and bars" refers to the official flag of the Confederacy during the (U.S.) War Between the States, sometimes known as the Civil War. This flag is different from the Battle Flag. See http://www.icss.com/usflag/confederate.stars.and.bars.html
: Maybe that is where it originally came from. But do you think it might have been current in U.S. movies from the 1940s because America was at war, many men were in the military and their various decorations for service and indications of rank sometimes had stars and bars in them?
I'm inclined to think it's older than the '40s. It may have had some currency in that period, but usually associated with rural types, as "quaint" language. There's also "my stars and garters," a bit more mysterious in origin....