I began my collection during a visit to Canada in the winter of 1970, where I acquired the first two flags. Now that collection has grown to encompass over 3300 flags, banners, patriotic/early American quilts and other flag related items spanning the 18th to the 21st century! In 2002, I acquired an important collection of early American flags from the Mastai Collection. A significant portion of the original Mastai Collection was kept together and is identified as the Mastai sub collection in the Zaricor Flag Collection.
The U.S. flags in my collection have a range of star patterns, with stars numbering from 13 to 50. My 'collecting of collections' has resulted in a broad representation of America and its flag covering over 230 years. These flags are silent witnesses of American history, society and its people. From the 1790s to now, preserved flags show us a rich and wide variety of star patterns mostly never seen in the 20th and 21st centuries.
But my collection has flags from every continent including flags taken to Antarctica (not to mention the moon!). Though my collecting has had an historical focus, the more 'mundane' flags that I have ended up acquiring have taught me about many things other than history. One can learn about anthropology, social organization and political ideas from the multi-layered symbologies and rich personal history of even just a single flag. They can show us the depth of a society's artistic, political and industrial development. As well as its greatest aspirations. In observing the design, the symbols, the material and the technique by which they were spun, weaved, dyed, sewed, embroidered, printed or painted; we come to understand something more than just what or who a flag represents. Sometimes a flag can reveal clues about a people or the person/s associated with its unique history. For example, I have seen a flag that was made from a silk dress given to a military unit by a woman; to make their regimental colors. That banner survived many, many decades and still shows the wine stain from her wedding day!
A flag's design is created to communicate an idea to as many or as few people possible, whether it is a nation state or a scout troop, it makes no difference. Flags have an artistic appeal that is distinct yet unique and pleasing. There are many flags that are works of art. From Americana simplicity to complex European heraldry flags, there are an endless variety of visual offerings.
You can view the collection consecutively through the ZFC numbers or via the "Sub Collection" routes on the "Home" page. The sub collections have been organized several ways: Some of the sub collections were collected intact from other collections. For example, the De Young Fine Arts Museum in San Francisco, Ca. dismantled almost their entire flag collection at auction. Today, the entire De Young collection remains intact as a Sub Collection in the Zaricor Flag Collection. Another example, the Bullock Sub Collection, consists mostly of WWII Naval Battle Flags and originally was a part of a personal flag collection belonging to Calvin Bullock: the founder and chairman of an important Wall Street firm. The Bullock collection, with some exceptions, was primarily military and represented several countries. The collection remained intact until the 1980s when part of it was sold at auction or donated to European museums. The remaining flags were rediscovered in the 1990s in the basement of Calvin Bullock's granddaughter's home, nearly 50 years after his death in June 1944.
One of the most important parts of the Zaricor Flag Collection is the Star Spangled Banner Sub Collection which consists of over 220 flags that were acquired from the museum where the Star Spangled Banner was made (in 1814 in Baltimore, Md). This sub collection has a wide variety of American flags dating all the way back from 1800 to the present.
Because I collected many of my flags in one, twos and threes, I have organized many of the flags according to a geographic area, to a country or according to another heading that might relate to various different groupings and topics. We have set up a short guide through this 'cyber museum'. Take the opportunity to make a short tour by clicking on the link at the top of this page on the left marked "Tour".