Lot 706

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Description:

THE AMERICAN FLAG FLOWN OVER PACIFIC FLEET HEADQUARTERS DURING THE ATTACK ON PEARL HARBOR
A most historic relic of one of the most notorious dates in our national history, an American flag flown at U.S. Navy headquarters at Pearl Harbor on the day that naval base was attacked by Japanese air and sea forces, December 7, 1941. The 72" x 59" flag is constructed of wool bunting, with separate sewn-together pieces comprising each red and white stripe and the blue canton, and with 48 white cotton stars sewn thereto. The hoist corners are reinforced, and the hoist itself bears a white cotton reinforcing strip with sewn-in rope, and a metal ring at the upper end thereof. The hoist bears the marking: "U.S. Ensign No 7 Mare Island Dec 1940" stamped in black ink, indicating that this is a U.S. Navy storm ensign, produced by the flag loft at the Mare Island Naval Shipyard in Vallejo, California. The hoist further bears the handwritten initials in black ink, "F.A.A.", and the inscription "Pearl Harbor Dec 7th 41", the date on which Japan launched its surprise attack against the United States Pacific Fleet, prompting the American entry into World War II. This was the flag that flew over the headquarters of Commander-and-Chief of the Pacific Fleet (CINCPAC) HUSBAND E. KIMMEL (1882-1968) at the Pearl Harbor Naval Submarine Base on the day of the attack, from the flagpole located on the quad between the Administration and Repair Shop, where Kimmel had his office, and the Bachelor Enlisted Quarters (respectively designated buildings 661 and 654). Present with the flag is a notarized letter from our consignor in which he states that the flag was acquired by his great-grandfather, Francis Andrew Anderson (the "F.A.A." referenced on the hoist), a civilian contractor directing the construction of an underground oil depot at Makalapa, the district in which CINCPAC headquarters, the submarine base and a number of above-ground oil tanks were located at the time of the attack. Following the air raid, the elder Anderson participated in the cleanup of the naval facilities, at which time he acquired the flag presented here. Also present is a letter from our consignor''s grandfather, Russell F. Anderson, who shares his own experiences as a Navy censor in New York at the time of the attack, and reiterates the account of his father''s acquisition of the flag. In part: "...My father, mother, and sister lived in Honolulu and had a house in Makalapa, near Pearl Harbor, where my dad was in charge of underground construction of an ammunition and oil depot in the mountains. But they were unharmed. And my dad subsequently acquired, through friends, the American flag which flew over the headquarters of the Commander-in-Chief of the Pacific..." Also present are an original photograph of Francis Andrew Anderson in Honolulu and several newspaper articles describing a series of presentations given by his wife, describing her experience of the Japanese attack. The flag itself shows considerable fraying at the fly, reducing its original length by one third, with additional separation between the stripes and numerous holes overall. Truly a singular artifact whose importance cannot be overstated.

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September 14, 2017 11:00 AM EDT
Chesapeake City, MD, US

Alexander Historical Auctions LLC

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Bid Increments
From: To: Increments:
$0 $99 $10
$100 $499 $20
$500 $999 $50
$1,000 $1,999 $100
$2,000 $4,999 $250
$5,000 $9,999 $500
$10,000 $19,999 $1,000
$20,000 $49,999 $2,500
$50,000 $99,999 $5,000
$100,000 + $10,000