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Unique 37 star U.S. flag

by Tom Carrier (02/06/08).
37 star U.S. flag using a forerunner of the silk screened process, c. 1870s, closeup
37 star U.S. flag using a forerunner of the silk screened process, c. 1870s, closeup
37 star U.S. flag using a forerunner of the silk screened process, c. 1870s

The 37 star U.S. flag was created in 1867 for the admission of Nebraska as a state. It lasted until the admission of Colorado in 1876.

This flag, though, was quite unique. It was made using a patented resist-dye process on wool bunting. You can see the silk screen-like look in the stars in the closeup photos.

Since the process was patented only in April 1870, we can date this particular flag, with the stars and the manufacturing technique, from 1870 to 1876.

We’re not quite sure what other flags were manufactured using this resist-dye process, but would love to find out.

Interestingly enough, this process for making flags was used by the United States Bunting Company of Lowell, Massachusett which also was the first U.S. company to manufacture wool bunting for flags in the United States. Previously, all bunting was manufactured in England, including the bunting in our earliest colonial-era flags flown during the Revolutionary War. How is that for ironic.

Former Union General, Congressman and Governor of Massachusetts Benjamin Franklin Butler had an interest in the United States Bunting Company and tried to get an exclusive contract to supply the bunting for the United States government, but failed. As Congressman, he wrote the first Civil Rights Act of 1875 that protected African Americans from lynchings from the Ku Klux Klan, but it was later declared unconstitutional.

One Response to “Unique 37 star U.S. flag”

  1. David Collins says:

    Recently found a 37 star printed silk flag in the attic. it was printed or dyed on white silk. can youprovide any other infomation concerning this item?

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