The Foundation’s Manuscripts

Over the years the Foundation has acquired a number of beautiful and important manuscripts.  Among them are:

  • Verzameling der Vlaggen by alle Natien in Gebruik [Collection of the Flags in Use by All Nations], an undated work from the mid-19th century, gathering watercolor images of all the flags Dutch diplomats and officers around the world could find and identify, with commentary in lovely copperplate script.  A page from this manuscript appears above, showing the Sardinian royal standard and below it a Sardinian admiral’s rank flag and the banner of the Order of SS. Maurice and Lazarus.
  • Recueil de Plusieurs Armoiries de l’Europe Blasonées par Moy. Joseph François de Cartier [Collection of Many Coats of Arms of Europe, Blazoned by Joseph François de Cartier] (Avignon, 1697), with about 430 hand-colored plates of coats of arms.  The title page apears above.
  • Zeeland flagAn untitled 17th century Dutch manuscript, called Flag Ms 1669/70 by the noted vexillologist Klaes Sierksma in his facsimile edition Flags of the World 1669-1670 (Amsterdam, 1966).  It is one of the very earliest comprehensive flag books in the world.  Shown above is a unique flag of Zeeland (from plate 167 in Sierksma’s facsimile).
  • A manuscript memorandum book kept by Matthew M. Yorston, gunnery officer aboard the U.S.S. Kenwood in 1864.  It contains, among much else, 14 pages of colored signal flags and pennants drawn by Yorston for his wartime use. In 2015 this manuscript was donated to the Whitney Smith Flag Research Collection in the Dolph Briscoe Center for American History at the University of Texas at Austin.