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It became a popular trend in America in the early 20th century, beginning around the time of World War I circa 1917, for women to knit or crochet patriotic doilies and American flags for decoration and as a show of patriotism.  The practice continued throughout World War II, and as a result, a number of 48 star crochet flags still surface occasionally today.  They're one of the few forms of homemade 48 star flags and they actually are more abundant than homemade pieced-and-sewn examples of 48 star flags, which are rarely encountered, owing to the huge number of mass-produced factory-made flags of the time. A large number of crochet 48 star flags are in the holdings of the Franklin Roosevelt Presidential Library, having been sent to the President by women over the course of his long term in office.

This particular example, among all the examples of the type that I'm aware of, is special and unique.  It's the largest, by far, that I've encountered, at more than six feet in length.  Most are no larger than two feet.  This flag was  tremendous labor of love.  The white stripes and stars of the flag have mellowed with age to a beautiful golden tone.  The flag has a knit hoist and finely sewn whip-stitched grommets.  The maker of the flag painstakingly knitted a total of 96 large individual stars for the flag, and hand stitched them back-to-back to complete each side of the canton.  The actual pattern of the stitches in the stars themselves is marvelously complex and must have been extremely time consuming to make.  Each star is more than two inches across at its widest.  The stripes are seamlessly knitted together, smoothly transitioning between colors.  In all, it is one of the most complex constructions of any American flag that I've ever encountered, and a special example of a rare flag from the first half of the 20th century.
 


 

Learn more about the parts of an American flag. Star Count:  48 Stars

Dates:  1912-1959

War Era:  World War I, World War II

Statehood:  Arizona

Construction:  Hand Crochet

Catalog Number:  IAS-00221

   
   

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45 Hand-Embroidered Stars
1896-1908


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