35 Star Antique US Flag | One of Approximately Ten Known Examples | Circa 1863-1865

35 Star Antique US Flag
35 Star Antique US Civil War Flag 2.jpg
35 Star Antique US Flag
35 Star Antique US Civil War Flag 2.jpg

35 Star Antique US Flag | One of Approximately Ten Known Examples | Circa 1863-1865

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Frame Size (H x L): 14” x 17.5”
Flag Size (H x L): 6” x 9”

Offered is a thirty-five star American flag printed on glazed cotton, and dating to the height of the Civil War.  Its stars are arranged in wonderful medallion pattern.  The large star in the middle is referred to as a “center star,” and it is canted to the 11:00 position.  The center star represents the newest state added to the Union (e.g., West Virginia in the case of this thirty-five star flag).  Surrounding the center star is a pair of concentric rings of stars, and surrounding the rings are four flanking stars positioned in the corners of the canton. 

The stars of this flag are pointy and folksy in their appearance, and are tightly packed onto the canton.  Although the maker of this flag is unknown, these distinctly shaped stars are common to a small family of flags that originated from the same workshop.  The maker of this flag made six star counts in this same style: seven, thirteen, fifteen, twenty-nine, thirty-three, and thirty-five.  The seven star flags were made to celebrate the first seven states to secede from the Union, while the thirteen star flags were made to celebrate the original thirteen states.  The fifteen star flags were made to celebrate Kentucky’s centennial.  And the twenty-nine, thirty-three, and thirty-five star flags were made to celebrate the latest states added to the Union (Iowa, Oregon, and West Virginia, respectively).  The thirty-five star variation is by far the rarest flag produced by this maker, and it is estimated that there are ten or less in circulation.

The thirty-five star flag represents the inclusion of West Virginia to the Union.  West Virginia was admitted on June 20th, 1863, and this flag became official on July 4th 1863.  The thirty-five star flag is the only flag that (1) represents a state admitted during the Civil War time period, and that also (2) became official during the Civil War.  Because it was official for a short time period—around 18 months—and because so many flags were produced in 1861 and 1862, thirty-five star flags are scarce and the most desirable of the Civil War counts. 

The thirty-five star flag was official until July 4th, 1865, the time at which the thirty-six star flag official and began to represent the inclusion of Nevada in the Union. 

Conservation Process: This flag was hand sewn to cotton fabric, and both were hand sewn to a mounting board.  To prevent the black dye in the cotton fabric from seeping into the flag, it was first washed in a standard wash and then in a dye setting wash.  The flag is positioned behind a UV resistant acrylic, and spaced apart therefrom using spacers. 

Frame: The antique frame is a dark brown with a pair of painted black rims.  It has a deep profile and makes a beautiful and big statement.   

Condition Report: This flag has some minor stains, the most notable of which are at the bottom left corner, to the right of the canton, and along the fly end.  Such stains are common in this style of flag and are age appropriate.   

Collectability Level: The Best – Perfect for Advanced Collectors  
Date of Origin: 1863-1865  
Number of Stars: 35   
Associated War: Civil War (1861-1865)
Associated State: West Virginia  

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