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Flags with 37 stars are much more scarce than flags with star counts of its predecessor, 36, or its successor, 38.  Why this is so is somewhat speculative, but it most likely has to do with the sentiment and events within the country at the time.  Flags of 36 stars tend to have been made at the end of the Civil War period, since the star count spans both the end of the war and a period of time into the Reconstruction era.  Flags of 38 stars tend to have been made during the American Centennial, since Colorado entered the union to become the 38th state in August, 1876, and most flag manufacturers anticipated Colorado's statehood due to the lengthy negotiations that took place prior to the act.  As a result, the period of 37 star flags, which spans more than 9 years, from March 1, 1867, through August 1, 1876, was a period of relatively few significant events that would stir patriotism and inspire the large scale production and use of flags.  Even at this late period, flags were more often made for public use than for private use.  As the patriotism leading up to the American Centennial began to build, flags in majestic patterns, most especially the medallion pattern, began to emerge. 

Because of this, I'm confident that this flag was likely made circa 1875-1876, toward the end of the reign of the 37 star flag, and at the start of the American Centennial.  Its beautiful double medallion is especially eye catching, owing to the large size of the stars relative to the canton. The stars nestle against each other in interconnected concentric rings, which are subtly oval in shape.  The condition of the flag is immaculate, with only the slightest aging to a few of the stars.  The flag is essentially unsoiled, and the degree of mothing and wear, which is almost always present to some extent, is virtually nonexistent.  It is as close to its original state and form as one could imagine.  The entire flag is hand sewn, which is somewhat unusual for a flag of the era, though not unexpected.  Original antique medallion flags rarely surface, and when they do, I've found that each one has its own special character, despite the common traits, such as corner stars, center stars, wreaths, and other attributes that define a Medallion Pattern American Flag.  This wonderful flag from the period of reconstruction and the early Centennial is a perfect example of the type.


 

Click here to see a gallery of rare Medallion Pattern Flags. Star Count:  37

Dates:  1867-1876

War Era:  None

Statehood:  Nebraska

Construction:  Cotton Stars on Wool Bunting

Catalog Number:  IAS-00271

   
   

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49 Stars, Liberation Flag
World War II, 1944


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