A 21-Star American Flag commemorating Illinois statehood or Exclusionary Flag

circa 1860

Hand-sewn, double appliqued cotton stars arranged in vertical rows of 3,4,3,4,3,4 on a bright blue cotton canton, with 12 machine-sewn cotton stripes, sleeve with hemp rope, bears "Mastai Collection" stamp and "No. 171."

57 in. x 93 in.


The Boleslaw and Marie-Louise d'Otrange Mastai Collection of American Flags and Related Patriotic and Political Memorabilia, Sotheby's, October 10, 2002, lot 102.
Estimate $8,000-12,000

Literature: Kevin Keim & Peter Keim, A Grand Old Flag: A History of the United States Through its Flags (2007), 58.

Boleslaw and Marie Louis d'Otrange Mastai, The Stars and the Stripes: The American Flag as Art and as History from the Birth of the Republic to the Present (1973),

Note: The Mastais' commentary on this Flag: "A practice severely frowned upon by government-and by President Lincoln in particular-was the custom indulged in by some Unionists of removing from the national constellation the number of stars equivalent to the seceded states-or even of those states whose loyalty to the Union appeared doubtful."

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Sold for $7,500 (buyer's premium included)