Remnant of Revolutionary Flag

Date: 1776 - 1783
About this artifact

Flags, or colors, helped boost morale and keep soldiers together on a smoky, often-chaotic battlefield. American troops marched under flags of all sorts during the Revolution. The Continental Congress resolved in June, 1777 that "the flag of the U.S. be 13 stripes alternate between red and white and the union be 13 stars in a blue field, representing a new constellation." Even after the Stars and Stripes became the official flag of the United States, American forces continued to fly other flags. This red, eight-pointed star and homespun linen fragment was once part of a flag owned by Lieutenant Colonel Hugh Maxwell of Charlemont, Massachusetts. Both the government militia and the Regulators marched with colors and music during the Massachusetts Regulation of 1786-87. Colonel Maxwell joined the government militia opposing the Regulators who had taken up arms against the government. As a Justice of the Peace for Charlemont, Maxwell administered oaths of allegiance to former Regulators in the months following the collapse of organized resistance.

Courtesy Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield, MA