Jeff Bridgman Antique Flags
Sold Flags


Available: Sold
Frame Size (H x L): Approx. 60.5" x 83.5"
Flag Size (H x L): 48" x 71"
Wyoming was admitted as the 44th state on July 10th, 1890. Although the 44 star count would not become official until July 4th of the following year, flag makers would have begun to add a 44th star immediately, if not even beforehand, in hopeful anticipation. This became common practice among flag-makers during the latter 19th century, reflecting both their support of westward expansion and a desire not to be one step behind their competitors.

According to the Third Flag Act, enacted by Congress on April 4, 1818, stars were to be added on Independence Day following a state's addition. Flag makers didn't generally care what was official, however, and while the 44 star count remained so until July 3rd, 1896, it would have generally fallen out of use at the beginning of that year, when Utah gained statehood on January 4th.

The stars of this particular example are hand-sewn, made of cotton, and double-appliquéd (applied to both sides). These are configured in rows of 8-7-7-7-7-8, with the top and bottom rows offset so that they resemble a broad hourglass. This lineal formation is commonly encountered on flags of this star count and is graphically attractive. The stars, which are all oriented with one point upward, were sewn by an expert seamstress with great care. Note how the subtle variation of their profiles, due to the handmade construction, makes them visually appealing.

The stripes and canton are made of wool bunting that has been pieced with treadle stitching. There is a twill cotton binding along the hoist with two brass grommets.

The flag’s overall presentation is beautiful. While the scale may seem large to a casual observer, unfamiliar with 19th century examples, it is important to understand that most flags with pieced-and-sewn construction, made prior to 1890, measured 7-8 feet larger on the fly. At just a hair under 6 feet, this is a relatively small flag among its counterparts.

Mounting: The flag was mounted and framed within our own conservation department, which is led by expert staff. We take great care in the mounting and preservation of flags and have framed thousands of examples.

The black-painted, hand-gilded and distressed molding is Italian. The background is 100% cotton twill, black in color. The glazing is U.V. protective plexiglass. Feel free to contact us for more details.

Condition: The overall condition is great for a wool flag of the period, especially in this scale. There are minor losses in the upper and lower corners at the fly end, and a scattering of smaller one in limited areas, mostly near the fly. The grommet at the top of the hoist binding wasn’t positioned properly when it was applied and protrudes of the edge. There is minor foxing and staining. 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: 44
Earliest Date of Origin: 1890
Latest Date of Origin: 1896
State/Affiliation: Wyoming
War Association: 1866-1890 Indian Wars
Price: SOLD

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