31-Star Great Star Parade Flag Celebrating California Statehood, Circa 1851

This is a rare 31-star medallion printed American flag, celebrating the addition of California to the Union.

The flag is printed on cotton, and has a spectacularly unique star pattern. A double medallion of dancing stars surrounds a large haloed inner star. The large medallion consists of sixteen stars; the inner medallion consists of ten stars. Four oversized stars can be found in each corner. This flag design is completed by thirteen alternating red and white stripes, which represent the 13 original colonies.

With thirty-one printed stars, this flag celebrates the monumental day when California became a state on September 9, 1850. Not even two years prior, Mexico had ceded California and much of its northern territory to the United States in the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. After gold was discovered at Sutter’s Mill, Coloma, California in 1949, California experienced a monumental boom in both wealth and population. In fact, California bypassed the sometimes-lengthy formal territorial stage and was instead granted full statehood by Congress under the Comprimise of 1850. California was admitted as a free-labor state under the Compromise of 1850. The 31-star flag became official on July 4, 1851, and remained the star count until 1858, when Minnesota joined the Union.


Flag is in good condition and flag is structurally stable. The flag is moderately stained, with soiling more evident on bottom stripe and among creases and folds. Several creases remain, mostly in centerfold, as expected with age and past use. Hoist edge has past display holes, where it was attached to a flagpole. Small tears in the cotton, all of which have been stabilized. Color is still vibrant, especially in the canton.

The flag has been archivally presented, mounted floating on dark linen, and framed in a custom-built brushed gold and beaded frame. Framed dimensions: 39” H x 52” W x 2 ¼” D.

Related Items

Subscribe and save!

Sign up for our emails to receive exclusive flash sales weekly! Get 50% off list price of incredible pieces, only offered to our subscribers.