General George Custer's wife, Libbie, created this famous swallowtail shape battle flag and personally delivered it to him on the battlefield on March 31, 1865 at Dinwiddie Court House near Petersburg, VA. The original was handmade of silk with the crossed sabers of the cavalry sewn into the middle. Custer flew this flag in every battle for the rest of his life until he was killed at the Battle of Little Big Horn in 1876.
During the Civil War, the Union forces used four official flags with 33, 34, 35 and 36 stars .The 35-star flag was the one flown most extensively during this time. During the War, the Confederate State stars were not removed from the Union flags, as the Federal government would not recognize by removing stars. The 35-star flag flew over Union forces from Gettysburg, Vicksburg, and Appomattox.
This is the regulation cavalry guidon that was carried by mounted Union troops in the Civil War. It usually would be "customized" by placing a troop letter or other designator inside the circle of golden stars. The U.S. Cavalry later used guidons in the Plains Indian Wars. In fact, the cavalry was the last of the three branches of service of the U.S. Army to carry the Stars and Stripes into battle. This was also one of the three flags that Colonel George A. Custer and the Seventh Cavalry carried at the Battle of Little Big Horn
The 20th Maine Volunteer Infantry Regiment mustered into Federal service in August, 1862. It became the standard for the unit eventually commanded by Joshua Chamberlain during the Battle of Gettysburg and the stacking of the arms in Appomattox.
Many groups adopted distinct battle flags due to the confusion of the First National Flag which, when furled, looked like the United States Flag. The Hardee pattern battle flag was designed by Gen. Simon Buckner who led a division under Gen. William Hardee.
Many groups adopted distinct battle flags due to the confusion of the First National Flag which, when furled, looked like the United States Flag. The Polk pattern battle flag, which incorporated a St. George’s cross, was designed by Gen. Leonidas Polk, an Episcopal bishop before the war. It was issued to units beginning in January 1862. It incorporated eleven white stars on a red St. George's cross on a blue field. Available in durable cotton only.