U.S. ENSIGN NO. 9 STILZ. PHILA ?? Help w/ ID and historical context please

Discussion in 'Flag Identification and Collecting' started by coins0709, Sep 14, 2016.

  1. coins0709

    coins0709 New Member

    Hi Everyone,
    This is my first post. I just inherited a flag from my grandfather. It has 48 stars and says U.S. ENSIGN NO. 9 STILZ. PHILA along the white border. I have a good idea what the 9 means (size correct?), but can you tell me anything about what STILZ means or where it could have flown or traveled to?

    Any guidance would be much appreciated.

  2. Robin Hickman

    Robin Hickman Well-Known Member

    Hello, RMiller!

    Welcome to the USA-FLAG-SITE Forum!

    Yes, "NO. 9" DOES refer to your Flag's original size (3.52'x6.69'). If I remember correctly, "Ensign" refers to a U.S. Flag made for, and flown by, the U.S. Navy. "Stilz" would be the name of the Flag manufacturer, and Philadelphia, PA was where the Flag was made.

    The following is from Jeff Bridgman's website. Mr. Bridgman is a recognized expert and respected by vexillologists from around the world. Although he was addressing a very special banner, that particular banner was made by the SAME ("STILZ") company as your Flag.

    "The banner was made by Louis E. Stilz & Bro. (John H. Stilz), who began business as a hatters sometime around 1887 at 212 N. 9th Street and shortly thereafter expanded to regalia and military goods. Moving to 151 N. 4th St. around 1890, then 155 N. 4th St. in 1894, the firm went on to fill military contracts in 1901 for guidons (marker flags) for cavalry, artillery, and Indian scouts. It remained in that location until at least 1936, at which time the president was listed as L.E. Stilz, Jr. and its trade was listed as flags and military goods."


    We have recognized Flag Experts who are members of our Forum, and perhaps one or more of them can answer questions. If you don't want to wait, you can visit Jeff Bridgman's website and ask him about your Flag. He may want to see some pictures of it, so be prepared!


    Good Luck with your "History Detective" endeavors!

    Robin Hickman
    "Your Friendly Neighborhood Flag Man"
    Eugene, Oregon, USA.

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