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    Normandy Escort Ship - USS Baldwin (DD-624) 45-star flag. USS Baldwin (DD-624) was a Gleaves-class destroyer. Commissioned in 1943, she was the only ship of the U.S. Navy to be named for Coal Heaver Charles H. Baldwin, an 1864 Medal of Honor recipient for his heroic actions in the sinking of the Confederate ironclad ram CSS Albemarle, where he volunteered to attack the ironclad with a spar torpedo. He was also promoted to Acting Master's Mate.

    The ensign of the USS Baldwin is a 45-star, wool, 120 X 180" double applique flag finished with a roped header and a loop at the upper hoist and a loop and lead line at the bottom. The flag is marked on the upper obverse hoist, "10 X 15 STANDARD" and on the reverse hoist, "USS BALDWIN [illegible] NORMANDY. The "Standard" mark was used by the U.S. Bunting Company (1865 to 1947) to indicate that the wool bunting met or exceeded U.S. Government specifications. However, since it was not a protected trademark, it was utilized by other manufacturers as well, making exact identification impossible. No explanation has been given as to why the USS Baldwin had a 45-star U.S. ensign aboard.

    After transiting from the Pacific to the Atlantic, the Baldwin was assigned to patrol duties along the Atlantic Seaboard until dispatched to Europe. She was assigned to Operation Neptune, the naval component of Operation Overlord, the Normandy Invasion. Attached to the Western Task Force, Force "O", Escort and Bombardment Groups 124. On D-Day she screened The USS Arkansas and USS Texas, as well as, engaged in exchange of naval gunfire with German shore batteries. She was hit twice but remained on station screening the Task Force, sinking a German E-Boat, and shore bombardment until she returned to Plymouth in July.

    She was reassigned to convoy duty to North Africa before assisting in the invasion of southern France and before being ordered back to the States, where she joined the USS Quincy in escorting President Franklin D. Roosevelt to the Yalta Conference in the Crimea. After her return she was reassigned Atlantic patrol until transferred to the Pacific, however, she arrived too late to engage in combat. She participated in occupation and minesweeping duties until she returned home.

    To acquire an ensign from a ship that served at Normandy and later in the Pacific would be an important achievement for any WWII, Naval War, or D-Day collection.

    During WWII the USS Baldwin was awarded the American Campaign Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign with three campaign stars, World War II Victory Medal, and the Navy WWII Occupation Medal w/ASIA Clasp.

    Condition: The ensign of the Baldwin is in good condition. It is used and slightly worn, but otherwise complete.

    This flag was formerly in the collection of Dr. Clarence Rungee, and is accompanied by his original museum inventory sheet with identifying information.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2020
    6th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 4
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 465

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