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  Cavalry Standards and Guidons

The Cavalry color or flag was called a "standard." The cavalry used only a single flag which was a smaller version of the Regimental flag used by the Infantry. The cavalry did not officially carry a national flag.

According to the Army regulations:
"Each regiment shall have a silken standard, and each company a silken guidon. The standard to bear the arms of the United States, embroidered in silk, on a blue ground, with the number and name of the regiment, in scroll underneath the eagle. The flag of the standard to be two feet five inches wide, and two feet three inches on the lance, and to be edged with yellow silk fringe. The flag of the guidon is swallow-tailed, three feet five inches from the lance to the end of the swallow-tail; fifteen inches to the fork of the swallow-tail, and two feet three inches on the lance. To be half red and half white, dividing at the fork, the red above. On the red the letters U. S. in white; and on the white, the letter of the company in red. The lance of the standards and guidons to be nine feet long, including spear and ferrule."

On January 18, 1862 General Order #4:
"Under instructions from the Secretary of War, dated January 7, 1862, guidons and camp colors for the Army will be made like the United States flag, with stars and stripes."
The cords and tassels of the the Cavalry standard were made of silk, red and white intermixed.

In the Illinois Civil War flag collection are several national flags reflecting the fact that most cavalry regiments carried a national flag in addition to the "standard"or regimental flag.


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