The Union Flag During The
Like the many other changes that happened during the
Civil War that lasted from 1861 to 1865, the Union flag
also underwent many changes. On 4 July 1859, the flag
that became official initially had 33 stars on it.
This flag was still in use, when the seceding of the
southern states began. Soon, in 1861, after Kansas was
admitted into the Union, the number of stars on the flag
changed to 34. Though the southern states were in
rebellion, the stars representing these states were not
removed from the flag because this would mean that the
Union had accepted the seceding. Hence, there were only
additions that were made to the stars and no stars were
removed from the flag.
Once again in 1863, there were changes in the flag when
West Virginia joined the Union. Now the Union flag was
made into a 35 star flag. Finally, towards the end of
the war, Nevada was admitted into the Union and there
were changes in the flag again.
When the Civil War started the number of stars in the
flag was 33 and by the end of the war, they had gone up
to 36, an indication that the number of states that had
joined the Union had also gone up.
In fact, when the Civil War began, President Lincoln was
given a suggestion that he should divide the Union flag
diagonally in half. However, this suggestion was never
implemented and though there were many changes that were
made to the Union flag during the Civil War, the above
mentioned changes were the most significant ones.
THE OFFICIAL UNION FLAGS DURING THE CIVIL WAR
33 star flag,
July 4,1859-July 3, 1861
34 star flag,
July 4, 1861-July 3, 1863
35 star flag,
July 4, 1863–July 3, 1865
OFFICIAL CONFEDERATE FLAG