Jeff Bridgman Antique Flags
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  ANTIQUE CIVIL WAR FLAG WITH 34 LARGE STARS, ORIENTED IN ALL DIRECTIONS, ON A RICH, STEEL BLUE CANTON, REFLECTS KANSAS STATEHOOD, 1861-63

Available: Sold
Frame Size (H x L): Approx. 67.5" x 125"
Flag Size (H x L): 55" x 112.5"
Description....:
34 star American national flag with a number of visually attractive features. Chief among these are its huge stars, oriented in all directions, on a beautiful, steel blue canton. The stars of the flag are arranged in a lineal fashion, in 5 rows of 6, with an off-set column of 4 stars along the hoist end. Entirely hand-sewn, the stitching is expertly done and especially attractive.

Kansas was admitted into the Union as the 34th state on January 29th, 1861, about 2 ½ months before the Confederate assault on Fort Sumter that marked the beginning of the Civil War. The 34th star was officially added on July 4th of that year, but most flag makers would have added a 34th star with the addition of Kansas in January. The star count remained official until July 4th, 1863, and 34 star flags would have generally been produced until the addition of West Virginia in June of that year.

The canton and stripes of the flag are made of wool bunting. Note how the deep, burgundy red, somewhat unusual among Civil War examples, complements the likewise unusual shade of blue. Together these make for create contrast, which lends a lot to the overall presentation. The stars are made of cotton and are double-appliquéd (applied to both sides). There is a linen binding along the hoist, with two hand-sewn, whip-stitched grommets.

Cotton cording was rolled into the selvage of the fabric along both the top and bottom edges of the flag. Stitched into position, this was probably done with an eye towards stability, but is highly unordinary. Some of the cord has worn through the surrounding wool. Another unique construction feature is the zig-zagging lines of hand-stitching, no-doubt included to strengthen the hem, along the fly end. These form opposing triangles that are interesting to the eye.

Mounting: The flag was mounted and framed in 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 mount was placed in a black-painted, hand-gilded and distressed Italian molding. The glazing is U.V. protective acrylic. The background is black cotton twill.

Condition: There are a limited number of minor holes throughout and some modest oxidation of the stars and binding. There are some small stains in the 7th, 8th, and 12th stripes. Many of my clients prefer early flags to show their age and history of use.
Collector Level: Advanced Collectors and the Person with Everything
Flag Type: Sewn flag
Star Count: 34
Earliest Date of Origin: 1861
Latest Date of Origin: 1863
State/Affiliation: Kansas
War Association: 1861-1865 Civil War
Price: SOLD
 

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