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    Description

    USS Nevada (BB-36) 48-Star Ensign.
    The USS Nevada, a venerable veteran of WWI, was the only American battleship to get underway during the 7 December 1941 attack at Pearl Harbor.

    This 53" X 96" (estimated) 48-star US cotton bunting contract flag was made by the Valley Forge Flag Company and is finished with a white canvas heading and two grommets. It is marked "USS NEVADA." This flag flew on the USS Nevada during or prior to WWII. Whether it was a storm ensign or possibly a boat flag remains undetermined.

    USS Nevada (BB-36) launched in 1914, was one of the two "Nevada" class battleships and she was the second ship to be named for the "Silver State." Her sister ship was the USS Oklahoma. Although damaged in the Pearl Harbor attack, she was refloated, repaired and served in both the Atlantic and Pacific during WWII. She ended her career as the target ship for the atomic bomb tests at Bikini Atoll where she survived both blasts. She was later sunk as a target.

    This flag was originally thought to have survived the Pearl Harbor attack; however, photographic evidence indicates that this flag is too small to have been the ensign flown by the Nevada on 7 December , 1941. Instead, and because of the condition, it is likely that this flag was used as a storm ensign, a smaller flag flown while underway during inclement weather. Because of the size, there is a possibility that this could be a boat flag from one of Nevada's cutters or gigs; however, they were inspected regularly and it is unlikely that they would be allowed to waft. The wafting or knotting of the flag is a phenomenon that occurs when a flag is constantly displayed in high winds and rain. Given the fact that it is of a type which came into use before the onset of the War, it seems likely that it was present in some usage on the Nevada on December 7th.

    Flags of any type from the USS Nevada are exceedingly rare and this flag would complement Pearl Harbor, WWII Navy, D-Day, European, Pacific or Atom Bomb collections.

    USS Nevada WWII Awards: American Defense Service Medal with "FLEET" clasp; American Campaign Medal; Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal with five campaign stars; European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with two campaign stars; World War II Victory Medal and Navy Occupation Medal with "ASIA" clasp.

    Condition: Poor, flag is used, worn, soiled and wafted (heavily knotted or otherwise disordered) with major loss to the bottom fly edge.

    Provenance: USS Nevada, Martin J. Kehoe.

    This flag was formerly in the collection of Dr. Clarence Rungee, and is accompanied by his original museum inventory sheet with identifying information, along with a 1950 letter of transmittal from the donor to the museum. He notes: "Rather than destroy the old flag by fire, it is thought fitting to give it a suitable resting place among other service flags. What better place could be selected than Dr. Clarence Rungee's collection."


    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: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,297

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