More historical flags

Each of these flags has been chosen to hold a place in our special selection because of the important role it has played in the unfolding of our Nation's history. They may be purchased separately, or as a complete set of ten. Please appreciate each for its history, which is offered below the picture. Click here for more historical flags.

1. ST. GEORGE CROSS - this is the flag carried to the New World by most of the early English explorers. Its use can be traced back to 1277 in Britain.

2. KING'S CROSS - one of the military colors used by the British colonial troops after 1743. As the British Union flag it was the standard raised by the Jamestown settlers in 1607. The design originated when King James I of England combined the St. George Cross with the Scottish Cross of St. Andrew.

3. BRITISH RED ENSIGN - this was adopted by Queen Anne in 1707 as a new flag for the United Kingdom - the Union Jack on a field of red. Cornwallis surrender under this flag at Yorktown in 1781.

4. CONTINENTAL FLAG - Colonial John Trumbull's painting, "The Death of Warren", shows this flag to be the one used by American forces at the Battle of Bunker Hill, June 17, 1775. The painting is now at the Yale University Art Gallery.

5. GADSEN FLAG - named after Colonel Christopher Gadsen of South Carolina, this flag was flown early in 1776 by Commodore Esek Hopkins of Rhose Island. Hopkins was the first Commander-in-Chief of the Continental Fleet. Its inscription represented a warning by the colonists to the British.

6. GRAND UNION - the first (unofficial) flag of the United States. It was raised in 1776 to celebrate the official status of the newly formed Continental Army by General George Washington, whose camp was then in Cambridge. Also known as the Cambridge Flag or Continental Colors.

7. BETSY ROSS - the first official United States flag, this was adopted by an Act of Congress on June 14, 1777. According to legend, a group headed by George Washington commissioned the seamstress to execute their design for presentation to Congress.

8. BENNINGTON - believed by many authorities to be the first Stars and Stripes used by American troops. Flown over the military stores at Bennington on August 16, 1777 when General John Stark's militia led Americans to victory over British raiding force. The original flag is preserved in the Bennington, Vermont Museum.

9. STAR SPANGLED BANNER - shortly before the War of 1812, two new states were added to the Union and a flag consisting of 15 stars and 15 stripes was created. This flew over Fort McHenry during a British naval bombardment and was what inspired Francis Scott Key to compose what later became our National Anthem. The restored flag now hangs in the Smithsonian.

10. OLD GLORY - born of the need for a more practical design to accommodate new states entering the Union, our 50-star flag has been in use since July 4, 1960. It was Congress on April 4, 1818 that established the number of stripes at seven red and six white, and provided for the addition of one star for each new state.

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