Jeff Bridgman Antique Flags
Sold Flags


Available: Sold
Frame Size (H x L): Approx. 46.5" x 70.5"
Flag Size (H x L): 34.5" x 58.5"
45 star American national flag, made in the period between 1896 and 1907, in an unusually small and desirable scale. 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. 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.

One of the flag's other attractive features is its small scale among those with of piece-and-sewn construction. Prior to the 1890's, flags with sewn construction needed to be large in order to serve well in their utilitarian function as signals. Lengths of 8-feet and longer were common. A six-foot flag was considered small. After 1890, flag-maker's began for the first time to produce sewn flags in quantity that measured 3-4 feet on the fly. These almost always had 13 stars, however, instead of a count representing the full complement of states at the time. It wasn't until well until the 48-star period (1912-1959) that sewn flags of this scale often bore the full star count. At just 34.5 x 58.5 inches, this flag is a great small size for display, yet large enough for significant visual impact.

Construction: The canton and stripes of the flag are made of wool bunting that has been pieced with lineal machine stitching. The stars are made of cotton and double-appliquéd (sewn to both sides) with a zigzag machine stitch. These are arranged in staggered rows of 8-7-8-7-8-7, which is typical of this star count. There is a heavy twill cotton binding along the hoist with two white metal grommets, along which there are faded ink-stamps that read "Standard" to indicate the grade of wool bunting as identified by the maker, followed by "3x5" to indicate size in feet.

Mounting: The flag has been hand-stitched to 100% silk organza for support on ever seam and throughout the star field. The flag was then hand-stitched to 100% cotton twill, black in color, which was washed and treated to reduce excess dye. And 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 a black-painted, hand-gilded and distressed Italian molding.

Condition: Excellent for a wool flag of this period. There is extremely minor mothing. There are tiny stains along the hoist binding where the flag was formerly tacked to a staff. There are extremely minor losses at the top and bottom corners of the fly end. The flag was certainly flown, but barely. This is a 9.8-out-of-10 among surviving examples.
Collector Level: Beginners and Holiday Gift Giving
Flag Type: Sewn flag
Star Count: 45
Earliest Date of Origin: 1896
Latest Date of Origin: 1908
State/Affiliation: Utah
War Association: 1898 Spanish American War
Price: SOLD
E-mail: Inquire

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