Help w/ restoration of 48 star flag

Discussion in 'Flag Identification and Collecting' started by chiefsangel, Jul 22, 2007.

  1. chiefsangel

    chiefsangel Guest

    Hi everyone~

    New here and stumbled across this wonderful site!
    My hubby, a soon to be retired United States Navy Chief was given a flag that was found in an old Navy footlocker. The flag is a 48 star, smells of mildew (very poorly kept) has some tears and is in need of TLC. How do we go about restoring this beauty to do her some justice.

    Any help will greatly appreciated.

  2. Teehomnessnef

    Teehomnessnef New Member

    Hello From Portugal

    Hello, I'm new here :DI love this forum, it was so great!Teehomnessnef from Elvas, Portugal
  3. NAVA1974

    NAVA1974 Active Member

    Hello Angel:
    If the flag is cotton it should be safe to wash in cold water and a mild detergent. If is is small enough to frame economically (ie less than 3x5 feet) then the tattered ends of the flag make a dramatic statement, testifying to the strife the flag has been through (much like our nation during the last century.) If the flag is larger you face challenges displaying it, unless you have a cathedral ceiling in your home.

    Wool flags are a different challenge. You may need to have it dry cleaned.

    Some may be concerned about the risk to the flag itself while cleaning it, but as a practical matter, most 48-star flags have little collector value in the first place. But they may make a strong visual statement when cleaned and displayed properly.
  4. Edward

    Edward New Member

    I have a 1912 46 Star Wool flag that I'd like to restore and hang in my home. I live in DC. Anyone know where I find a reputable restoration person/company?
    thank you
  5. NAVA1974

    NAVA1974 Active Member

    Hello Edward,
    Thanks for bringing your question to the Forum. How badly damaged is your flag? Is it a family heirloom? Do you have any documented history for the flag?

    The experts in flag preservation / restoration are Textile Preservation Associates in West Virginia. Cathy L. Heffner is the company's President and their contact info is:
    phone: 304-724-1861

    Based on the costs for treatment that I have heard, vs the price I have paid for flags, I would guess that the cost for restoring a 48-star flag would be about twenty to thirty times the value of the flag (or more.) So it better be a pretty important flag before you bring it to them.

    You may wish to contact the Textile Museum in D.C. to see if they have a list of textile experts who can give you advice on treating your flag and/or estimates for their work.
    See :: Textile Museum ::

    As luck would have it, on March 3 the Textile Museum has the following program:

    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]March[/FONT] 3 Wednesday
    10:30 AM – 1 PM
    Did you receive a rug or textile as a gift, or purchase one while traveling? Drop in during this ongoing, monthly program to learn about your objects from Textile Museum curatorial and conservation staff. Please note that TM curators specialize in the textile arts of non-Western cultures, but the conservation staff can answer questions about caring for textiles produced worldwide. Fee: free/members; $5/non-members. No reservations are required.

    Last edited: Feb 26, 2010

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