This is a 38-star American Centennial parade flag, celebrating Colorado statehood and the 100th anniversary of our Nation's independence. The Centennial celebration took place in Philadelphia in 1876 and all manner of flags were made for the official Centennial International Exposition, which was a World’s Fair event of massive scale. Flags were not only made for the fair, of course, but were also produced for general celebrations of this important anniversary nationwide, such as parades, galas, and local town events. A flag such as this one would have been used as a child’s waver during a parade.
The star pattern of this flag features irregularly positioned (or dancing) stars, in six rows of 7/6/6/6/6/7 stars. The flag design is completed with 13 alternating red and white stripes, each stripe representing one of the original thirteen colonies. The 38th star was added for the admission of Colorado, which occurred on August 1, 1876. Per the Third Flag Act of 1818, stars were not officially added until the 4th of July following a state's addition. For this reason, 37 was the official star count for the American flag in 1876, even as flag manufacturers continued to produce 38 star flags in 1876. The 38 star flag became the official United States flag on July 4th, 1877. The 38 star flag flew for thirteen years, through 1890. Five presidents served under this flag: Rutherford B. Hayes (1877-1881), James A. Garfield (1881), Chester A. Arthur (1881-1885), Grover Cleveland (1885-1889), and Benjamin Harrison (1889-1893).
A wonderful celebration of our nations early history, this flag is an authentic antique, dating circa 1876.
The flag is in good condition overall. The flag is printed on cotton and still retains its original waver stick. Some yellowing and light staining appears on the flag. Three holes are present just under the canton on the fourth white stripe. Iron stains are present at the three points where flag is attached to waver stick. Creasing at top, fly end of flag.
It is archivally presented, mounted in a custom-built black frame with a metallic spandrel. Flag dimensions are 19” H x 21” W x 2” D.