The Mississippi Civil War Sesquicentennial continues and in the coming months we will be highlighting Museum Division collections related to 1861 and the Civil War. Special thanks to Nan Prince for writing this series.

This photo shows the flag before conservation.  The flag had undergone previous repairs and treatment which included the use of an adhesive which had to be removed.

This photo shows the flag before conservation. The flag had undergone previous repairs and treatment including the use of an adhesive which had to be removed.

This 1st National pattern flag belonged to the 22nd Mississippi Infantry, Company E, the “Liberty Guards.”  The Liberty Guards organized in Amite County in April of 1861 and were mustered into Confederate service in July at Liberty.  Veterans of Company E preserved the flag and donated it to the Mississippi Department of Archives and History in 1907.

By 2010, time and wear had taken its toll on this fragile silk flag.  Thanks to a very generous donation from the Mississippi Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, the flag has been stabilized and conserved by Textile Preservation Associates in Ranson, West Virginia.  These photographs show the flag during the conservation process.

This photo shows the conservator conducting a technical examination of the canton of the flag.  The flag was badly soiled and much of the fabric was weak and powdering.

This photo shows the conservator conducting a technical examination of the canton of the flag. The flag was badly soiled and much of the fabric was weak and powdering.

The canton was more stable than the bars of the fly.  This photo shows the conservator piecing part of the red silk that had become weak, brittle, and separated.

The canton was more stable than the bars of the fly. This photo shows the conservator piecing part of the red silk that had become weak, brittle, and separated.

The final photo shows the flag after the conservation process was completed.

The final photo shows the flag after the conservation process was completed.

The flag was put in a pressure mount frame which will provide uniform support throughout the entire surface and create a stable environment that will protect it from outside contaminants.  The entire conservation treatment process took 260 hours to complete.

All photos are courtesy of Textile Preservation Associates.

Artifacts from the Museum Division collection that are not on exhibit are available for viewing by appointment. Please contact Nan Prince, Assistant Director of Collections, by email to schedule an appointment.