First Confederate National Flag


Physical Description

Blue cloth with a circle of eight stars, two wide red stripes and one wide white stripe.

General History

The Confederate States of America’s first national flag was known as the “Stars & Bars.” This flag flew from 1861 to 1863. Each of the eight stars represented a Confederate state in March 1861 when the flag was adopted. The similarity of the design of the Confederate flag and the Union “Stars and Stripes” made it difficult to distinguish between the two in the heat of battle, most notably during the First Battle of Bull Run (known to Confederates as First Manassas). This resulted in troops firing on their own men—or “friendly fire”—and in the capture of a number of prisoners of war.

Subject: FlagsRelated Event: Civil WarCivil War and Reconstruction


See more items in: Political and Military History: Armed Forces History, Military, Military, ThinkFinity

Exhibition: Price of Freedom

Exhibition Location: National Museum of American History

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: AF.42724 [dup1]Catalog Number: 42724Accession Number: 165001

Object Name: flagOther Terms: flag; Military; CSA, Navy

Physical Description: wool (overall material)Measurements: overall: 36 in x 57 1/2 in; 91.44 cm x 146.05 cmoverall: 35 1/2 in x 58 in; 90.17 cm x 147.32 cm


Record Id: nmah_461713

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