What kind of flag had 45 stars and just a blue field?

Discussion in 'American Flag History' started by Joseph, Mar 8, 2007.

  1. Joseph

    Joseph Guest

    Does anyone know of any US flag that had 45 stars and just a blue field with no stripes? Any help would be appreciated. Thank you.
  2. Peter Ansoff

    Peter Ansoff USA Flag Site Admin

    Hi, Joseph!

    The flag you're describing is probably a US Navy "jack." The jack is flown on the bows of Navy ships when the ship is anchored or in port. It is a plain blue flag, with the same number of stars as the national flag. It's sometimes called the "Union Jack," although this can be confusing because the British Union Flag is also called by this name (and for the same reason -- it is flown on the bows of Royal Navy ships).

    A 45-star jack would have been used between July 4th 1896 and July 3rd 1908. This period includes the time of the Spanish-American War. The battleship USS Maine, which blew up in Havana harbor in February 1898, had a 45-star jack (it was not flying because the explosion occured at night -- it was found by the bow flagstaff on the wreck, ready for raising the next morning). I believe that the USS Maine's jack is now at the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD.


    Peter Ansoff

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