Jeff Bridgman Antique Flags
Sold Flags


Available: Sold
Frame Size (H x L): 8.75" x 11"
Flag Size (H x L): 3.25" x 5.5"
Cover is a 19th century term for envelope. During the Civil War, all sorts of interesting designs were sold that bore patriotic imagery, political commentary and cartoons, etc. Variations exist that are both pro-Union and pro-Confederate. Most have illustrations set on an otherwise blank ground, in the upper left corner, for example, with lots of negative space. A small handful of styles, like this one, have a background that is entirely comprised of a flag.

This example features an 11-star version of the Confederate First National flag, more commonly known as the "Stars & Bars," with its stars arranged in a circular wreath. In the central white bar, set within an oval window, is a portrait image of Confederate States of America President Jefferson Davis. Given the existence of other Jeff Davis examples, made to advertise his candidacy for the office, logic suggests that this cover was probably printed to support his appointment by the Confederate Congress.

The flag's 11 stars represent the 11 states that would official secede from the Union, by way of popular votes in each state, that were then ratified by the respective state governments. These included South Carolina, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Virginia, Arkansas, Tennessee, and North Carolina.

Brief History of Jeff Davis

Jefferson Finis Davis was born in Kentucky on June 3rd, 1908 to Revolutionary War solider Samuel Davis and his wife Jane Cook Davis, but soon moved to Mississippi and most of his childhood was spent in that state. In 1824 he entered the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, after which time he served 6 years at the rank of Lieutenant. In 1835 Davis married the daughter of then Colonel and future president Zachary Taylor, under whom he was stationed. This occurred despite Taylor's disapproval. The marriage ended after just 3 months, when Sarah Taylor Davis succumbed to a bout of malaria. Returning to farming, Jeff Davis lived in relative seclusion for the next 8 years, before successfully running for the United States Congress. He served the State of Mississippi in this capacity for just one year, then, when war broke out in Mexico, he rejoined the army, was promoted to Colonel, and fought gallantly in the Mexican War, particularly at the battles of Monterrey and Buena Vista.

In 1847 he was offered a promotion to Brigadier General, but declined when he was elected to the U.S. Senate, where he served from 1847-1851 and then again from 1857 through the opening year of the Civil War (1861). In between these two terms Davis was appointed to the cabinet of then-President Franklin Pierce, where he served as Secretary of War.

After Mississippi seceded from the Union on January 9th, 1861, Davis resigned his senatorial seat in support of the Southern cause. He was appointed President of the Confederate States of America in February and was inaugurated on February 22nd. He was the only man to serve in this role throughout the war.

When Robert E. Lee's Army of Virginia surrendered to Union Forces on April 9th, 1865, this was the beginning of the end of the Confederacy. Others followed, with Joe Johnston's armies surrendered on April 26th. Union troops chased Davis from Richmond to Georgia and finally caught him on May 10th. He was charged with treason, but never stood trial. He was instead imprisoned at Fort Monroe, VA, and released after two years. He survived to the age of 81 and passed in New Orleans on December 6th, 1889.

Mounting: The paint-decorated and gilded molding has an inflection profile and dates to the period between 1840 and 1870. The cover was mounted by our in-house conservation department, which is led by masters degree trained staff. We take great care in the mounting and preservation of flags, as well as many other objects, and we have literally mounted thousands of antique flags; more than anyone worldwide. Feel free to contact us for more details on how this particular object was preserved.

Condition: There is a bit of rubbing which has revealed places on the back of the cover, where there are folds and seams. The colors are strong and the overall condition is excellent.
Collector Level: Beginners and Holiday Gift Giving
Flag Type:
Star Count: 11
Earliest Date of Origin: 1861
Latest Date of Origin: 1861
State/Affiliation: The Confederacy
War Association: 1861-1865 Civil War
Price: SOLD
E-mail: Inquire

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