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    Description

    Important 1844 Henry Clay Silk Campaign Flag
    While several varieties of Clay portrait flags appear on the market from time to time, this style is much rarer, and highly desirable because of the delightful "coon" image. The central device is a reclining raccoon, and below him is this little ditty: "The moon was shining silver bright, The stars with glory crowned the night, High on a branch, that 'same old coon,' Was singing to himself this tune, _______ de kitchen, Hurrah! Hurrah For Harry Clay!" Condition is very decent overall. There is a 1" hole, harmlessly located to the right in the second white stripe from the bottom, as well as several much tinier holes, in unobtrusive locations. Several very minor small 1/2" to 1 1/2" separations along old fold lines, none of which involve any fabric loss. These conditions could be easily, virtually invisibly repaired by any competent textile restorer. However, the previous owner, a sophisticated collector of early political cloth, did not find this necessary, nor would we. There is light even overall soiling, again not objectionable. The white areas have evenly turned to a beige tone, however the reds and blues have held quite strong, the red having resisted the common tendency in these early flags to turn to a rust color. When photographing this flag for the catalog, we had a hard time getting a sharp photo of the raccoon. This image is made up of many very fine lines of ink, many of which are close together. As framed, the fabric is puckered, rather like the skin on your thumb after long immersion in water. As a result, the photographed image of the "coon" is fuzzy. It is clearer in person. However, in order to display this piece to best advantage, it would be advisable to have a good textile conservator re-back the flag with silk. This would be the best way to completely flatten out the surface, so the image can be best read. Having noted these various minor imperfections, we reiterate that the overall display appearance is quite presentable, as the photo shows, and could be further improved with minimal, easy restoration. One of the finest political textiles we have ever handled. 31" x 27", nicely custom framed.


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    Auction Dates
    November, 2004
    12th Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 8
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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