Last modified: 2016-02-26 by pete loeser
Keywords: ufe | unidentified flags | 2013 |
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Below is a series of images of flags that have been provided to FOTW; some we have recognized, and some we have been unable to recognize. If you can help us identify any of these flags, please let us know! Contact the: UFE Editor.
Unidentified Flags on Page 1
Unidentified Flags on this Page
Unidentified Flags on Page 3
Unidentified Flags on Page 4
Unidentified Flags on Page 5
Unidentified Flags on other pages
The discussion about these flags is continued on the Camp Barneo, Arctic Ocean page.
Images from John Harvey-Lee, 8 March 2014
I attach an image of an etching which we have by William Wyllie dedicated to W.D.Kirkpatrick. As you see it has a gun in the foreground, with a separate image of naval vessels approaching. But can you tell us what is the significance of the flags ? Do they spell out some kind of message?
John Harvey-Lee, 8 March 2014
I'm not a naval signal flag expert, but since nobody else has taken a swing at helping with this, I'll give it a try. This is a strange one. They appear to be a mixture of some NATO signal flags and some International Code of Signals (ICS) flags. The top right flag is the pattern of both the NATO and ICS "Answering"" pennant. But it has the opposite color pattern starting with a white vertical stripe instead of a red one. Usually this flag is used to answer a flag signal or indicate all flags being used are ICS. It also can be used to represent a decimal point. An artistic error perhaps?
The middle right flag is the NATO "Speed" (proceed at a specified speed) maneuvering flag. The bottom right flag (blue-white blue) is the ICS "Juliett" or "J" pennant.
The top left flag (blue with white square) is the ICS "papa" or "P" pennant. The bottom left flag is the NATO "Formation" (ships are to form in specified formation) maneuvering flag.
What the message is I leave up to the naval experts, but since NATO uses some of the ICS flags, it would indicate to me either a maneuvering command or perhaps an artillery firing solution? The artwork, however, seems to pre-date NATO to me.
So who is up-to-bat next?
Pete Loeser, 30 March 2014
Wyllie died in 1931. All the flags were used by the Royal Navy in the 1920s (and probably before).
The Left hoist could be: 5 pennant, 8 pennant, Echo flag. The Right hoist could be: Zero flag, 2 pennant.
Zero flag could also be ICS Papa, but it is unlikely that flags from different codes would be used together.
David Prothero, 30 March 2014
So it would be 5,8,E and 0,2 (or Z,2)? Still sounds like maybe either a maneuvering command or an artillery firing solution.
Pete Loeser, 30 March 2012
I don't know what these are; they look like CODE in reverse, SPEED, J and P, FORMATION, of the NATO-flags. Whether they actually are, and what they might mean I don't know. But no doubt they spell out a message, as otherwise they'd have no reason to be there.
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 31 March 2014
I think that it might be something entirely personal to Wyllie and Kirkpatrick. A little more information about the etching at can be found at Lawrences Auctioneers: 300 Works by William Wyllie, Lot 15.
David Prothero, 31 March 201
Images from Bishop Lamoureux, 8 March 2014
I am not sure if this is allowed on FOTW, but I will try anyways. There are a couple of UFEs asked about by users on Reddit. All of the information for each flag is at the following links.
I would add these descriptions to Bishop Lamoureux flags.
Flag #23a - a green flag with a white Shahada and in each fly corner a moon and star.
Flag #23b - I find rather unlikely.
Flag #23d - the design similarities with the Stars and Stripes are rather noticeable.
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 31 March 2014
Flag #14-23b reminds one of some of the Tudor Naval Ensigns or the Baffin and Stuart Ensigns.
Pete Loeser, 4 April 2014
Since image UFE14-23c appears to be from the Jet Li film "Fearless," my guess is it is probably fictional in nature. The colors are loosely based on traditional Asian colors - perhaps the yellow representing the Manchu people, the red representing the Japanese and the blue representing the Han people as one respondent indicates. I've never seen the diagonal arrangement like that before, but I'm not an expert on Chinese flags, so any suggestions?
Pete Loeser, 28 August 2014
Image by Clay Moss, 28 August 2014
With the artistic help of Clay Moss, I was able to ""straighten out"" UFE14-22d to better help identify it. Does it ring any bells with anybody now seeing it as a flat illustration?
Pete Loeser, 28 August 2014
Images from Esteban Rivera, 9 March 2014
Here are two pictures showing an orange horizontal flag with a blue logo in the middle, consistng of an encircled triangle: Sources: El Ciudadano article #1 and El Ciudadano article #2. These images may also be the flag already reported back in 2006 and I guess is the flag of the PH (Partido Humanista).
Esteban Rivera, 9 March 2014
Image from Julia C. Morgan, 11 March 2014 - Drawing by Klaus-Michael Schneider, 12 March 2014
I am interested in date etc. Is it East African Railway and Harbour? Pin is marked with makers name DOW???, Birmingham.
Julia C. Morgan, 11 March 2014
It's not at like any of the flags we show at East African Railways and Harbours ensign page, but the abbreviation EAR&H seems pretty widely accepted as the East African Railway and Harbour.
Rob Raeside, 11 March 2014
At the Silver Makers' Marks - Birmingham Assay Office Website, a mark DOW, without additional unreadable letters, is reported as: David Dow, mark seen 1891 and 1896..1912 on Fob medal. Comment: Argyle Street, Glasgow.
This would seem a bit early for said company, though maybe a son might have continued the Dow business.
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 23 March 2014
Image from Kathleen Lathom, 11 March 2014
This photo is of a sidemarked ship mug circa 1920s possibly up to early 1930s. Any ideas on the house flag?
Kathleen Lathom, 11 March 2014
This flag is on a white china mug. I have reviewed the shipping lines for several maritime nations, and although there are several in Germany that use this pattern, all seem to have some letters on them, or a device in the centre. The closest match I can find is Great Yarmouth Shipping Co., Ltd. in Britain, but again it should have some letters.
Rob Raeside, 12 March 2014
We do show per slatire blue over white for Pontevedra Maritime Province 1905-1933 (Spain), but I'm not sure that it would fit with a mug.
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 14 March 2014
Image from Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 26 August 2014
Kathleen considers that mugs were typically used on board and that they did tend to have flags on them. With the Grindley backstamp indicating the 1920's or so, and English manufactures having produced other Spanish crockery for ship use as well, she doesn't think Pontevedra would be out of the question. But apparently she doesn't have anything on the use or the origin, though.
It's very likely blue and white are the correct colours, as they are the inset on the mug; had the flag had a different colour, then it would probably have been done in that colour. Attached is a smaller version of her photograph of the mug.
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 26 August 2014
Image from Jan Walls, 22 March 2014
I have just received this playing card, which is mentioned on "The World of Playing Cards", but I can't find what shipping line it is, would you have any idea please? It has Compania General de Navegacion Sociedad Anonima written on it.
Jan Walls, 22 March 2014
At first guess, I would say that is the name of the company, although there is a possibility that "Anonima" might mean "anonymous" or "unknown"". Neither my Spanish nor Google Translate know that word.
Rob Raeside, 22 March 2014
I'd say a Sociedad Anónima is actually a legal form of company, probably one where the owners/shareholders can not be forced to pay the company´s debts (hence, from a legal standpoint being anonymous).
Since the flag strongly suggests the company name starts with an "A", I´d go for the one staring us in the face: "Argentina". Or in full: Compañia General de Navegación Argentina, Sociedad Anónima. Would the "card" be a playing card, by the way, as there's a mention here.
It says: "Argentina Compañia General de Navegación Sociedad Anónima was owned by A. M. Delfino (Buenos Aires) and was closely connected to Hamburg Sud, Hamburg. Delfino was well-known for the organization of cruises and the sale of tickets, and this circumstance later on gave rise to a new activity as travel agents."
There's a link to the Delfino website, (It's rather animation-based, which is not my thing to begin with, plus I currently don't have them running; would someone be willing to check whether there's information there?)
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 22 March 2014
Image from Ivan Sache, 22 March 2014
The "Argentina" company appears to have been established by Antonio M. Delfino (1853-1922), with the support of General Roca, President of the Republic, to operate scheduled lines between Buenos Aires and Patagonia. The line was inaugurated in 1901 by the SS Comodoro Rivadavia. No profit was obtained until 1908. From 1901 to 1922, the 11 ships operated by the company completed 564 journeys, transporting 151,762 passengers and 1,531,421 tons of freight. After the death of Delfino in 1922, the company was transformed into the Antonio M. Delfino SA. Marítima y Comercial maritime agency.
Sources: "Argentina" Compañía General de Navegación (S. A.) and this Detailed biography of A. Delfino.
Ivan Sache, 22 March 2014
Image from Russell Crowe. 30 March 2014
I have purchased a very old ensign flag and all that is written on it is "commodore", it is very well made and very old and smells very musty. I purchased it on the south coast near Portsmouth in the UK.
Russell Crowe. 30 March 2014
At first I thought this might be the commodore's flag from the Cunard Line, but the lion lacks the globe and crown, and is on a white diamond.
Rob Raeside, 30 March 2014
I'm thinking this is an old Commodore Shipping Lines flag, but will have to do a little research to verify that.
Clay Moss, 30 March 2014
Some more speculation, it has the same pattern as the Clan Line. Could it be swallow-tailed to indicate a commodore, if shipping lines have commodores?
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 18 February 2016
This flag has been identified as the Director of Mongolian and Tibetan Affairs Commission in Tibet.
Image from John G. Wild, 4 April 2014
Back in the 1980's My brother was stationed in Germany, he knew I was obsessed with flags back then, and when a friend of his returned from West Berlin with two unusual flags which he said he bought in Berlin, my brother talked his friend into selling them to him. He immediately sent them on to me as a birthday gift and shipped them back to me.
These flags were old then, and I have looked far and wide for what they may have been. The smaller flag, (about 6x11 feet) is stamped on the white (bunting?) material used for the hoist rope, "Deutche Gierung" and another stamp on the hoist of the same flag says "Hergestellt Berlin 22-07-1921."
The larger flag which is of exactly the same design but about 9x15 feet, is also stamped on its hoist but much of the stamped image is too badly blurred (like the ink got wet and ran) for me to read everything, but what I can make out is "Deutche Gierung" then "Herges.....(Blurred too badly to read,) 1924" and finally the final part of the stamp says "Minister......(once again, badly blurred ink,) Schiff....(more blurry ink,)..." and that's all the markings I can find.
Both Flags are of the Exact same design. Both flags are sewn from individual strips of cloth even the white stripes are separate material, so it can NOT be a flaw in the manufacturing process. Black, White, Red, with the arms. What makes these flags unusual to me is the narrow white fimbriation separating the Black Stripe from the Red, and again another one separating the Red Stripe from the Gold one.
One other detail, but it may not mean anything, the Arms on the smaller flag are in the center of the flag, while on the larger flag, it is offset slightly toward the hoist. the flags are currently in storage since I am in the process of moving and I cannot get to them. I have tried to recreate how they look as accurately as possible by copying a flag from the Internet and just adding the white fimbriations. I am dying to find out what these flags are, they are in nearly brand new condition aside from the obvious effects of aging on the material, which, considering their age, is remarkable. If you can find out what they are, please let me know. I hope this image helps.
John G. Wild, 4 April 2014
This is an odd arrangement with distinct fimbriations between the colour bands. The black-red-yellow was used by the Weimar Republic, 1919-1933, so your flag probably dates from that period, as seems to be confirmed by date stamps on it. The only flag I could find with an eagle on it is the President's flag from 1919-1921, and that had a white fimbriation around the eagle.
Rob Raeside, 4 April 2014
The reconstruction drawing looks like a strange version of the Federal Service Flag (already in use in Weimar times as Reich Service Flag). However, without photographs of the flag itself and, of course, of the stamps, anything more on these flag would be pure speculation.
And by the way: no, the flags are not 6 x 11 feet or 9 x 15 feet! They are and always were in metric units.
M. Schmööger, 4 April 2014
For a possible identification of the flag, cross check with the "state flag" of Interwar Years German flag proposals. It appears to be a good match, both in time period, description, and location. Note that the UFE14-30 image is a reconstructed image.
Russ Adams, 8 February 2016
Image from Esteban Rivera, 6 April 2014
I was wondering if anybody has seen this flag before or if it´s a new UFE find. The picture was taken in October of 2013 during the Cambodian anti-government protests. The picture's caption reads: "A monk carrying a flag" which leads me to think it is a Buddhist flag
Esteban Rivera, 6 April 2014
The photos at the above Wikipedia page show the flag (incompletely viewed) among the flags of Cambodia National Rescue Party which, together with the fact that it bears an inscription, suggests that it is actually a political flag, probably created during the protests.
Tomislav Todorovic, 6 April 2014
Image from Esteban Rivera, 6 April 2014
In this picture on Flicker one can see five flags (left to right): 1. Vinci, 2. SCA (Société Concessionaire d'Aéroport), 3. Cambodian flag, 4. UFE #1, and 5. UFE #2.
Vinci "is a French concessions and construction company founded in 1899 as Société Générale d'Enterprises"". Sources: Wikipedia and Vinci. Its flag is the company logo on a white horizontal flag.
Regarding the SCA, "on July 6, 1995, the Royal Government of Cambodia signed a concession agreement with the French-Malaysian joint venture company Société Concessionaire d'Aééroport (SCA), also refered to as Cambodia Airports, to operate Phnom Penh (PNH - Pochentong International Airport).
SCA is 70 percent owned by French Groupe GTM and 30 percent by Muhibbah Masterron of Malaysia. Source: The Pochentong International Airport (on Wikipedia}. Its flag is its logo on a white horizontal flag.
Can anybody help identify the other two UFE's in this picture?
Esteban Rivera, 6 April 2014
Groupe GTM is owned by Vinci, I think. The "M" in the last flag sure looks like that of Muhibbah Masterron.
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 13 April 2014
Vinci Construction acquired Groupe GTM in 2001. I believe Muhibbah Masterron is a Malaysian and/or Cambodian Holding Company. The SCA (Société Concessionnaire de l'Aéroport) administers and runs the airport, but is pretty well is controlled by Vinci and Masterron. According to the Phnom Penh International Aiport Blog "SCA is 70% controlled by Vinci Group (Vinci) from France and 30% by a local holding company, Muhibbah Masterron (Cambodia) Company Limited (MMC). [The] Muhibbah Masterron (Cambodia) Company Limited (MMC) is 70% owned by Muhibbah Engineering Berhad (MEB) and 30% owned by two local Cambodian businessmen, Mr Okhna Kong Triv and Mr Okhna Hann Khieng. Contacts for Muhibbah Masterron (Cambodia) Company Limited are very unclear, it could be a shell company."
Anyway I believe all these flags are corporate flags of the various companies controlling and operating the airport. Unfortunately, I can't make out all the flags clearly enough to be sure, but from left to right I'd agree that it would go Vinci, SCI, Cambodia, "unknown", and MMC.
Pete Loeser, 13 April 2014
Image from Esteban Rivera, 13 April 2014
(The UFE is on the right - The screen shot from the second video is mentioned below.)
In this BBC news report there are two embedded video. In the first video titled "Ukraine crisis: casualties in Sloviansk gun battles" as well as on the second video titled "Ukraine crisis: Kramatorsk police headquarters stormed", there's an UFE flag, which is a horizontal flag which shows one element which is the Order of St. George orange/black stripes, but there's an inscription that goes along the flag and also what seems to be an unidentified logo or a CoA.
Esteban Rivera, 13 April 2014
Image from Victor Lomantsov, 13 April 2014
You saw the flag of the "People`s Militia of Donbass" (Narodnoe Opolchenie Donbassa), a movement founded in Donetsk in 2013. "Donbass" is an abbreviation of "Donetsk Coal Basin" (Donetsk Coal-Field), very often used as an alternative name of the region.
One note: Kramatorsk is not in Crimea. It is in the Donetsk region of continental Ukraine.
Victor Lomantsov, 13 April 2014
The flag above the megaphone looks like a Soviet navy flag. Is the object including the St.George stripes a flag or a poster on the entrance of the building?
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 20 April 2014
Well, considering there's a staff going up to it, I'd opt for a flag.
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 20 April 2014
Since Victor kindly identified this flag, it's proper to have additional information on this flag and relocate it to where it belongs. I suggest within the Donetsk Republic.
"The Donbass People's Militia is an armed pro-Russian group that declared allegiance to the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic. It is formed of mostly civilians turned into informal militias with mismatched uniforms and unclear identities. They also hold several light guns and armour. They are mostly active in the Donetsk Oblast and are led by Pavel Gubarev, who was designated by protesters as their regional governor. Gubarev is a former member of the neo-Nazi Russian National Unity paramilitary group.
Since March 2, 2014 protesters began collect signatures for a referendum to define Donetsk's future. The members of Donbass People´s Militia were among them. In mid-March 2014, SBU began arrests of DPM leaders. Since early April, 2014, the militant group has seized control of several government buildings in Eastern Ukraine such as in Donetsk, Kharkiv, Kramatorsk and Sloviansk. There's currently an Easter truce. The DPM is one of several pro Russian groups in the area (others are: Donetsk Republic [organization], Army of the South-East, Lugansk Guard, Denikin Volunteer Brigade of Lugansk, Antifascist Movement [composed of Borotba, Ukrainian Choice, Antifascist Committee of Ukraine and Russophone Ukraine] )."
Sources: Wikipedia: Donbass People´s Militia and Pro-Russian Unrest in Ukraine.
Esteban Rivera, 20 April 2014
Speculative image from Tomislav Todorovic, 15 April 2014
I got a message from a friend of mine in Portland, OR, USA. He said that he was driving around and saw a flag flying by a house at the side of the highway that was unfamiliar.
"At first I thought it was a Greek flag, because that's what it looked mostly like. But then I noticed that the canton instead of the cross had a blue/white checker pattern, like the maritime signal flag for 'N', but without so many squares, I think. I don't think there was anything further on the flag, but I couldn't tell for sure as it was hanging in pretty low wind."
It apparently had a blue and white horizontally striped field, canton of blue and white checkers (if I'm picturing it right). Any ideas?
David Kendall, 10 April 2014
Only that the November flag has 4x4 squares. So, to reduce that, you'd get 3x3, which is basically a fat cross with the centre voided. And if it wasn't all that readable, I'm not even sure about that voided centre.
I hope your friend recalls where he saw it, so he can apply identification method #1, but for now I'm going with a Greek flag with (if it really was different) the cross as it is in the Greek arms.
Peter Hans van den Muijzenberg, 20 April 2014
Image from Robert Leek, 21 April 2014
I live in Prince Edward County, Ontario, Canada, and am an amateur flag collector and retailer. Recently I was contacted by one of our local museums, enquiring about replacing a flag that is in their display collection. It has become frayed, and they wish to purchase a new one. They believe that the flag, pictures of which are attached, come from a small German settlement which arrived some time ago. Specifically, they believe that this flag was carried to Canada by Hessians in the 18th Century, so this may have some military significance. In any event, I was wondering if you would be able to identify the origin of this flag, or suggest contacts who could help.
Robert Leek, 21 April 2014
At the first glance it seems to be the reprint of a Brunswick infantry colour, in this case probably a colonel's colour due to the white background, used either by the 1st company or later on by the 1st battalion. The motto and the horse forcene with basement (which might have been white or green on the original colour) match my hypothesis. About the cypher (a double "C") I have no idea. You might take a look at the War Flags website; Your flag is not listed there, but you will find evidence to other Brunswick military colours.
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 22 April 2014
Thank you for your quick and most interesting response. I will share this with the museum in possession of the banner. I imagine that they will wish to conduct their own research, and would probably like to reproduce the banner as well (at some expense, I would imagine). If you discover anything further (The double "C"" for example), please continue to share.
Rob Leek, 22 April 2014
In case of Brunswick the Colonel´s Colour is later called Duke's Colour.
Klaus-Michael Schneider, 22 April 2014
This looks like a modern reproduction of an eighteenth-century colour of an infantry regiment from Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel. Information on the colours of Brunswick regiments during this period is fragmentary, but the flag in the photo most closely resembles the colonel's colour (Leibfahne) of the von Riedesel Regiment. However, the colour of the field is normally given as yellow, and the flames are usually depicted as a slightly darker blue. The C, doubled and reversed, is the cipher of Duke Carl, who reigned from 1734 until 1780. The cipher and wreaths should all be silver. The other colours of the regiment were in the reverse colours - blue with yellow wavy 'flames'.
The regiment served in North America during the War of Independence, and was captured at Saratoga. Although the colours were supposed to be surrendered, members of the regiment hid them from their captors and returned them to Germany.
Sources: Wikipedia on von Riedesel and the Saratoga campaign.
Perhaps the community was formed originally from some veterans of the regiment, who chose to remain in Canada rather than return to Europe. A group has recreated the Von Riiedesel Regiment.
The original colour would be painted silk, but I came across a printed polyester version at Universalhandel24. (other flagmakers are available!)
Ian Sumner, 23 April 2014
Your comment again is very helpful, and confirms my supposition. As I haven't enough knowledge about Brunswick military colours, I didn't dare to speculate about the yellow colour. It would be more helpful, if Rob Leek could provide us with a photo of the original flag, which is to be restored in the museum mentioned by him.
Neubecker (1939) displays a similar colour, black with yellow flames and dates it 1780 (Regiment Prinz Friedrich).
Now the things I want to know:
The discussion on this flag is now located on the Camp Barneo, Arctic Ocean page>