Jeff Bridgman Antique Flags
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45 STARS ON AN ANTIQUE AMERICAN FLAG IN AN EXTREMELY SMALL SCALE AMONG EXAMPLES OF THE PERIOD WITH PIECED-AND-SEWN CONSTRUCTION, 1896-1907, SPANISH-AMERICAN WAR ERA, REFLECTS UTAH STATEHOOD

Web ID: 45j-931
Available: In Stock
Frame Size (H x L): Approx. 44.5" x 59.5"
Flag Size (H x L): 32.5" x 47.5"
 
Description:
45 star American national flag, made in the period between 1896 and 1907, in a very small and desirable scale for the period.

Utah became the 45th state in 1896. It had been attempting to gain statehood for many years, but remained a territory, primarily due to the fact that the Mormon Church and Utah authorities continued to be openly tolerant of polygamy. In 1890, Mormon Church President Wilford Woodruff published a manifesto that denounced the contract of “any marriages forbidden by the law of the land”. This gave way to Utah’s 1896 acceptance.

Although this technically remained the official star count until July 3rd, 1908, the 45 star flag was generally used from that year until 1907, when Oklahoma joined the Union. Due to the Spanish-American War (1898) and Teddy Roosevelt’s famous world tour of the “White Fleet” (launched in 1907), this was an extremely patriotic period.

While flags measuring six feet and less are common today, smaller flags like this were unusually small among those with pieced-and-sewn construction that were made prior to 1912, when the 48 star flag was adopted. During the 19th century, flags meant for extended outdoor use needed to be large in order to serve well in their utilitarian function. Lengths of 8-feet and longer are thus common. Even those examples made for decorative use were often very big; too large to easily frame and display in a modern indoor setting. The smaller the flag, the more unusual it was. Examples measuring just 4-feet on the fly, like this one, are extremely scarce. Flag-makers generally employed a count of 13 stars when they made a sewn flag of this scale.

Construction: The canton and stripes of the flag are made of wool bunting that has been pieced by machine. The stars are made of cotton and double-appliquéd (sewn to both sides) with a zigzag machine stitch. These are configured in staggered rows of 8-7-8-7-8-7, which is typical of the 45-star count. There is a twill cotton binding along the hoist, with two brass grommets. A black-inked stencil along the hoist reads: "STANDARD", to brand the grade of bunting used by the maker, followed by "2 1/2 x 4" to indicate size.

Mounting: The flag has been hand-stitched to 100% silk organza for support on every seam and throughout the star field. It was then hand-stitched to a background of 100% cotton, black in color, that was washed to reduce excess dye. An acid-free agent was added to the wash to further set the dye and the fabric was heat-treated for the same purpose. The mount was then placed in black-painted, hand-gilded and distressed Italian molding. The glazing is U.V. protective Plexiglas.

Condition: There are a few modest stains and there is minor mothing throughout. Many of my clients prefer early flags to show their age and history of use.
   
Collector Level: Intermediate-Level Collectors and Special Gifts
Flag Type: Sewn flag
Star Count: 45
Earliest Date of Origin: 1896
Latest Date of Origin: 1907
State/Affiliation: Utah
War Association: 1898 Spanish American War
Price: Please call (717) 676-0545 or (717) 502-1281
E-mail: info@jeffbridgman.com


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