Only flag known to exist from the Second Georgia Infantry Regiment, Confederate Army, to be sold Feb. 21-23 by Richard D. Hatch & Associates
FLAT ROCK, North Carolina—The only flag known to exist from the Second Georgia Infantry Regiment of the Confederate Army, made in 1860 by eight ladies in Burke County, Ga., will be sold at a massive three-day multi-estate sale to be held Feb.21-23 by Richard D. Hatch & Associates. A pair of Union presentation swords will also be sold. The flag is expected to bring $150,000-$250,000. Live Internet bidding and catalog preview are available at www.liveauctioneers.com.
“To say this flag is rare would be a gross understatement,” said Richard Hatch. “It's the only one known to exist, plus it's a piece of American history. The fact that the consignor is a direct descendant of the man who carried the flag into battle – William Douse Whitehead (Company D, 2nd Georgia Regiment) – only adds to its cache.” The flag has three bars, eleven stars and measures 3' x 4'.
Whitehead was killed at the battle of Malvern Hill, Virginia, on July 1, 1862. The flag was carried into some of the major battles of the Civil War: Manassas, Antietam, Gettysburg, Petersburg, Fredericksburg, Chickamauga and finally Appomattox, where Robert E. Lee surrendered to Ulysses S. Grant. Afterward, the flag was returned to Burke County, where it remained with the original family.
Whitehead's descendants own the Ivanhoe Plantation in Georgia, as they have for the last 144 years. The property is still a functioning plantation, with about 2,000 acres. The family decided the time was right to sell the flag, which has been kept in a strong box for years. It is still in its original state – battle worn and bloodstained – and it is in a remarkable state of preservation, with few tears.
The eight Georgia ladies who made the flag were Sallie Jones, Sallie Blount, Vic Warner, Julia Blount, Lattie Carter, Annie Mandell, Florence Lyne and Sarah Whitehead. When they presented the flag to the regiment, in May 1861, Captain William R. Holmes remarked, “This flag shall be our rallying point around which every sharpshooter will claim no greater honor than to protect and defend.”
Unlike the crossed-bars-and-stars flag commonly associated with the Confederacy, this one has three broad horizontal bars – two red and one white – and eleven stars (ten forming a circle and one inside). It was the first national flag of the Confederacy (later dubbed “stars and bars”). It is mentioned in the diary of descendant Catherine Whitehead Rowland in a 2005 book titled “Burke Sharpshooters.”
The two Union presentation swords both carry pre-sale estimates of $3,000-$5,000. One was given to William Bandy (Infantry, Company K, 37th Illinois Volunteers) by the men under him who also fought at the battle of Pea Ridge, Ark. (March 1862). The other sword was issued to Captain Scott Miller (7th Indiana Regiment), who was wounded in battle. His discharge papers will also be sold.
The Civil War items are expected to draw intense bidder interest at the sale, but they are but three of an estimated 1,700 lots – some of them dealer multiples – that will be offered over the course of the three days. About twenty estates will be represented. Items will include original artwork; fine silver; art pottery; cut glass; Handel and other lamps; Tiffany and other art glass; porcelains; and more.
An anticipated top lot of the fine art category is an original oil-on-canvas painting by the Irish artist James Humbert Craig (1878-1944). Craig was known for his figural and landscape works. The piece to be sold is an Irish landscape, measuring about 14” x 20”. It is housed in a frame and was executed around 1910, just as Craig was hitting his stride. It has a pre-sale estimate of $4,000-$6,000.
Other artwork that will cross the block includes watercolors by Robert R. Scanlon and Claude Hayes; a collection of paintings on porcelain (including Wagner and KPM); an Emile Galle marquetry plaque; a huge Royal Vienna beehive plaque; an early Dutch oil; lithographs by Picasso, Marc Chagall and Salvador Dali; bronzes; and an Old Master oil painting depicting Christ and angels.
Also to be sold will be original works by artists such as Charles M. Webb; N. Dela Verne; R. Laporte; Joseph Rovers; E.S. Fisher; A. Nolke; Francis Chapin, Louis Icart and John Chamberlain. Silver sets certain to wow the crowd include a Reed & Barton “Francis I” coffee and tea service with matching tray (est. $8,000-$12,000); and a 267-piece “Bridal Rose” set by Alvin (est. $8,000-$12,000).
Art glass items will include Tiffany; Favrile; French cameo by Galle; Daum Nancy; Legras; DeVez; Handel; Loetz; Moser; Steuben; and more. Porcelains will feature examples by Meissen; Royal Vienna; Old Paris; Sevres; a collection of Wedgwood; and more. Art pottery will include Teco; Greuby; Rookwood; Moorcroft; Roseville; and more. Also sold will be several sets of fine china.
A huge collection of cut glass and Arts and Crafts items will be sold, including pieces by Oscar Bach and Stickley. Lamps will include a Wilkinson floral 22” leaded lamp and a Handel lamp. Also sold will be Lladro, Hummel and Royal Doulton figures; Persian carpets; fine furniture; a signed Wallace & Nutting stand; clocks; U.S. gold coins; a Steinway grand piano; and Grand Tour items.