A 34-Star American Flag commemorating Kansas statehood

circa 1861

Hand-sewn, single appliqued cotton stars arranged in the 'Phalanx' pattern, rows of 7,7,6,7,7 centering an open space, on a two-part wool bunting canton, the stars 'peek' through, hand-sewn wool bunting stripes, the lowermost stripe embroidered with the initials, "CV," linen hoist bears "Mastai Collection" stamp, "No. 6," and hand-written, "Chas. Vigcao."

70 in. x 112 in.


The Collection of Boleslaw and Marie-Louise d'Otrange Mastai.

Estimate $4,000-6,000

Literature: Kevin Keim & Peter Keim, A Grand Old Flag: A History of the United States Through its Flags (2007), 115.

Boleslaw and Marie-Louise 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), 113.

Note: The Mastais' description of this Flag: "The strikingly original 'Open-Center Flag' of thirty-four stars recalls the 'square formation' pattern of earlier days...but the purpose of the arrangement may have been primarily practical, space beinging allowed for the thirty-fifth star (West Virginia's), known to be shortly forthcoming. The patterning made possible the balanced design of equal, aligned rows, the sturdy "phalanx" apparently facing attack staunchly in all directions. In addition, however- and the remark applied to all these antique American flags- since no attention was paid to matching the directions of the stars' rays, and other minor irregularities are evident in the handwork, there is a pleasant sparkle that preserves the composition from ponderousness."

Descriptions provided in both printed and on-line catalogue formats do not include condition reports. The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot provided by Freeman's. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colors and shades which are different to the lot's actual color and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation because Freeman's is not a professional conservator or restorer but rather the condition report is a statement of opinion genuinely held by Freeman's. For that reason, Freeman's condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot. All transactions are governed by Freeman's Conditions of Sale.

Sold for $4,688 (buyer's premium included)