James D. Julia always has some interesting Civil War items in their auctions and this past auction was no exception.
RARE 8TH NEW JERSEY INFANTRY GUIDE FLAG. This fabulous regulation marker or guide flag was made by Tiffany & Company of New York late in 1863. Howard Madaus states this contract on his monograph on this rare guide flag included with flag. Flag measures 18.5” x 23.5” in 26-1/2" long x 21-1/2" high archival frame. Flag has 13 “battle honors” of major engagements of the Army of the Potomac ending with “Chancellorsville” and “Gettysburg”. The 8th New Jersey was one of the hardest fought regiments of the war. According to their monument at Gettysburg, they saw action in 38 battles with 905 casualties! Flag also has the name of its commander Col. John Ramsey who led troops at Gettysburg where he was shot and wounded, one of 47 casualties July 2, 1863 at Cemetery Ridge, Gettysburg. This flag surely saw action in all the remaining 1863-1865 battles such as “The Wilderness” where Col. Ramsey would again be wounded, and finally severely wounded at Petersburg, VA on June 16, 1864. Col. Ramsey was brevetted Brig. Gen. for this action on Dec 2, 1864 and later brevetted Maj. Gen. in 1865. Gen. Ramsey is buried at Arlington National Cemetery. This flag like the 1st Florida Cavalry flag in this sale is a great rarity. These may be the only surviving examples currently known in private hands. CONDITION: Flag overall is very good as conserved and framed. The blue silk canton is all intact as are embroidered stars and embroidered battle honors. Silk in stripes is about 50-60% intact. Red color in stripes is good, White stripes have darkened but red embroidered “honors” retain good color and contrast well as seen in photos. Blue silk hoist is intact with good color. Accompanied by a Conservation Treatment Report by Jessica Hack Textile Restoration, describing the details of the restoration process. Also includes a CD of 18 photographs of the restoration. 8-76330 JS106 (20,000-30,000).
RARE FIRST FLORIDA VOLUNTEER CAVALRY U.S. GUIDE FLAG. This is possibly the only known U.S. Civil War Florida Regulation Flag of any kind. The First Florida Cavalry was formed at Fort Barrancas, FL in October of 1863 and saw actions in Florida and Alabama including the Blakely and Mobile campaigns near war's end in 1865. The First Florida Volunteers, First Regiment of Cavalry, was the only full regiment of U.S. troops raised in the state. This flag is identical to other "general guide" flags known, measuring 18" x 24". The flag is totally hand-sewn with silk stripes and canton and a heavy, reinforced 3/4" silk hoist with 34 white silk embroidered stars in a 6-6-5-5-6-6 arrangement and silk embroidered unit designation "1ST FLA VOLS" in canton. This flag is identical in manufacture and construction to several other known flags in the NY State Collection of New York Unit and the 8th NJ Volunteer Infantry, which is also being offered in this sale. Their survival on these silk flags is quite small, no doubt many were made for other units but there are probably less than 5 or 10 of this pattern in all private/institutional collections combined and this, of course, is the only Florida American Civil War Flag known. Thirty four stars were regulation from July of 1861 until July of 1863 and no doubt this flag was presented to unit upon their first organization late in 1862. These flags are thought to have been contracted from a New York embroiderer and Tiffany is known to have sold very similar embroidered flags. Howard Madaus published in his "Markers for Guide Flags" that this pattern is indeed a product of Tiffany. Fort Barrancus being near the port of Pensacola, had easy access to military goods coming by SHIP from depots in the north and New York. The yellow thread used as shadowing and for unit designation is done with yellow silk thread because yellow typically denotes the Cavalry branch of service. This is a wonderful and unique Florida Civil War Flag that has been conservation-framed and it presents beautifully. CONDITION: Flag overall is very good and 95%+ intact. The blue silk hoist is complete and in very good condition, exhibiting its four hand-whipped eyelets. Good colors with scattered areas of staining. Colors are very good with bleeding of red dye from red stripes to other parts of flag as can be seen in photos. The yellow silk thread used in unit designation is a bit faded as can be seen in pictures. Silk embroidery in unit designation appears fully intact with only minor fraying on about 1/2" area of the "T" in "1ST". Blue canton and red stripes are almost 100% intact but white silk has cracking and loss, especially at fly edge. White silk used in flags was typically bleached during the Civil War and often is the most fragile color on Civil War flags. 4-44915 JS68 (20,000-30,000).