Dating in the time period 1818
Dating in the time period 1818
They were produced for a whole host of patriotic as well as practical reasons and have been made throughout the entirety of our existence as a free nation.One of the more prominent early uses of 13 star flags occurred in 1825-1826, when General Layfayette returned to the U. from France for America’s 50th birthday celebration.
13 star flags were made both to celebrate 50 years of American independence in 1926, as well as to commemorate Layfayette’s vital role in the freeing of our country from British rule.13 star flags were carried by soldiers in both the Mexican War (1846-48) and the Civil War (1861-65), as a patriotic remembrance to our colonial struggle for freedom.They were also used in flags made for early presidential campaigns.Most notable are several varieties of printed flags (commonly called parade flags or hand-wavers), made to promote the presidential aspirations of William Henry Harrison in 1840 and Abraham Lincoln in 1860. Navy used 13 star flags in the Colonial and Revolutionary periods, of course, but they may have never entirely stopped using them until the 20th century. An Article For “Focus”, The Semi-Annual Journal Of The Antiques Council, Winter 2006 by Jeff Bridgman, 2006 If you are looking for a Colonial / Revolutionary period 13 star flag, in other words, one made prior to the Treaty of Paris in 1783, or at the very least during the period when we had 13 states, prior to the 1791 addition of Vermont, I have some very bad news for you. And those that are claimed to be of that time period are highly suspect until they are identified by one of the tiny hand few of people who are capable of the highly specialized task.To put things in perspective, consider that there are currently only one or two 14 star flags are thought to exist that are period to when we had 14 states.
And although this was an unofficial star count, and our 15th state was added only one year later, only three period 15-star flags are known to exist. Kentucky became the fifteenth state in 1792 and our flag was officially changed from 13 to 15 stars in 1795. This is a rather long period for an official flag of these United States, but there are only three, period, 15-star, Stars & Stripes flags known? Most of us are quite familiar with at least one of the three.
This is the Star Spangled Banner, which is housed at the Smithsonian.
Made by Mary Pickersgill in 1813, the Star Spangled Banner, one of the earliest and most loved examples, is plainly not an 18th century flag.
Even the Smithsonian does not own a period 13 star flag.
And it is this mystifying statement that I always feel puts things in a very clear light with regard to the rarity of these very important, historic objects of our nation’s heritage.
The next thing to understand is that while there are almost no period examples, many thousands of early 13 star flags exist. In fact, many people are surprised to learn that 13 is one of the most common star counts on Stars & Stripes flags made in the 19th century.