In April of 1861, The American Civil War began. The Southern States wanted a weak central government with powerful state governments and the continuance of slavery. South Carolina, Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana, Georgia, Florida, and Texas became the first seven states in the Confederate States of America. This flag first appeared with seven stars. Later flags had nine, eleven, and eventually thirteen, as the Confederacy grew. The similarities of design with the United States flag in the smoke of battle caused confusion for the soldiers. For this reason, additional versions of the Confederate Battle Flag were designed.