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    Pearl Harbor, Guadalcanal, Iwo Jima and Okinawa;
    From One of the Most Decorated Ships of WWII.

    USS San Francisco (CA-38) Ensign and Commission Pennant.
    Ensign and Commission Pennant sets from the same WWII ship are exceedingly rare. The USS San Francisco (CA-38), commissioned in 1934, was a New Orleans-class heavy cruiser and the second ship named after the city of San Francisco, California.

    The ensign of the USS San Francisco is a 66" X 100" US 48-star cotton Storm King-brand flag made by the Collegeville Flag Company. It has sewn stars & stripes and is finished with a header and two grommets. The flag is stamped in black on the upper obverse hoist "6-10 STORM KING" and in black in on the upper reverse hoist, ""USS San Francisco Survived Pearl Harbor 7 Dec - Rabal - Wake - 16 Nips Downed - 37th Div Assist - Hornet - Sank 'Kirishima' - Okinawa - Iwo J. 6 Nips Downed - Assist 1st - 6th USMC - Most Decorated".

    The commission pennant is a 3" x 48" wool pennant with sewn stars & stripes. The hoist is a dark blue/ black canvas with a single grommet. It is marked on the white stripe "USS San Francisco 453." (This is the Rungee Collection number.) A commissioning pennant is the distinguishing mark of a warship in national service. It is considered the personal flag of the captain and is worn at the highest point, or in the bow of a boat in which the captain is embarked.

    The USS San Francisco, respectfully nicknamed Frisco, boasted wartime exploits too numerous to list in their entirety. She survived the attack on Pearl Harbor without damage and was immediately ordered out to sea. She spent the remainder of 1941 and the first months of 1942 as an escort to the early carrier raids against Rabaul and Japanese installations in the Gilbert and Marshall Island groups, during which she downed 16 enemy aircraft. In April 1942, she reported back to Pearl Harbor to serve as an escort for troop transports bound to the Western Pacific and Australia. The Frisco then headed west to support operations against Guadalcanal in the Solomons.

    She participated in the six-month Guadalcanal Campaign where she provided screening and escort and it was for her gallantry during the 12-15 November 1942 Naval Battle of Guadalcanal that she earned her Presidential Unit Citation. The ship was struck more than forty times by heavy shells and suffered 85 killed and 105 wounded, but survived the battle relatively intact. She returned to Pearl Harbor and spent the next four months being repaired.

    The San Francisco resumed operations in March 1943 and served with distinction throughout the remainder of the war, participating in nearly every major action of the war in 1944 and 1945. Her crew had earned four Medals of Honor, thirty-two Navy Crosses, twenty-one silver stars and one bronze star. She was decommissioned in February 1946 and scrapped in 1959.

    WWII Awards: US Navy Presidential Unit Citation (PUC); Navy China Service Medal; American Defense Service Medal with Fleet Clasp; American Campaign Medal; Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with seventeen campaign stars; World War II Victory Medal; Navy World War II Occupation Medal with ASIA Clasp and Philippine Presidential Unit Citation. The San Francisco was the third most decorated US ship of World War II (The USS Enterprise was first and the USS San Diego was second.). She received her PUC for Guadalcanal. For the same action, three members of her crew were awarded the Medal of Honor: Lieutenant Commander Herbert E. Schonland, Lieutenant Commander Bruce McCandless, and Boatswain's Mate 1st Class Reinhardt J. Keppler (posthumous). Admiral Callaghan was also awarded the Medal of Honor (posthumous). Her bridge wings, damaged during the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal and removed during repairs, are now mounted on a promontory in Golden Gate National Recreation Area.
    The USS San Francisco also had the distinction of having no less than fifteen ships named for her fallen crewmembers.

    Condition: Good - the flag is used, worn, soiled and has frayed upper and lower hoist corners, but is otherwise intact.

    The commission pennant is Good - used, worn and soiled with frayed fly tips

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

    For those who did not receive a hard copy of the auction catalog, we present here the introductory comments and history of Dr. Rungee and his remarkable collection. If you scroll further, you will also find various contemporary newspaper articles, as well as a selection of the many letters of donation and transmittal which accompanied the collection and a categorization of the collection.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    December, 2019
    14th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 7
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 482

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