Fragments of the Star Spangled Banner

Physical Description
Three wool bunting fragments with raveled edges.
Specific History
These three fragments were cut from the flag that flew from Fort McHenry in 1814. This was the flag that inspired Francis Scott Key to write the Star Spangled Banner. In 1880 the fragments were presented to William Carter by Eben Appleton, the grandson of the commander of Fort McHenry. Carter, a local historian, carried the Star Spangled Banner in a parade during Baltimore’s Sesquicentennial Celebration on 13 October 1880. As the flag was being packed for shipment to New York, Appleton cut three pieces and gave them to Carter. Carter’s daughter gave them to the Maryland Historical Society who donated them to the Smithsonian.
Currently not on view
Object Name
fragments, flag
date made
associated date
1880 - 1889
Pickersgill, Mary
Physical Description
wool (overall material)
overall: 190 mm x 70 mm; 7 1/2 in x 2 3/4 in
place made
United States: Maryland, Baltimore
used in
United States: Maryland, Baltimore
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
War of 1812
Expansion and Reform
See more items in
Armed Forces History: Armed Forces History, Military
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center

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