Page Title: First Continental Regiment Flag

First Continental Regiment Flag


#H141 $49.00 3x5' dyed nylon finished with heading and grommets.

Domari Nolo "I Refuse to be Subjugated"

And man o man did they ever refuse to be subjugated. These guys were everywhere. They were important in Washington's siege of Boston. They stayed behind and were the last to leave after covering the main army's dangerous nick of time retreat from Long Island. They crossed the Delaware with Washington. They were "at Brandywine, Germantown, Monmouth, and every major skirmish, and battle all the way to Yorktown.1"  where they fought “the most important part of the siege” according to General Steuben. They saw Cornwallis surrender at Yorktown and this flag was there. These guys saw action in every one of the original 13 colonies.

“P.M. 1st. Rt” is said to mean “Pennsylvania Militia 1st Regiment.1 It is not clear to me however why the term militia applies to them. Congress authorized by resolution that companies of these Pennsylvania riflemen be raised and formed into a rifle battalion. These men were therefore not Pennsylvania Militia. They were raised and organized by Congress, not the Pennsylvania state government. As this new page gets exposed to the internet and more knowledgeable people send in responses regarding this question, I will post those responses here.

What is with all the confusing names? Writes Mr. Sisca in the article referenced below, "On January 1, 1776 there was a reorganization of the Continental Army, and Thompson’s Rifle Battalion became the First Continental Regiment" The flag is believed to have been created after March 8 of that year. Other names you will also find referring to this unit are The Pennsylvania Battalion of Riflemen and Thompson's Rifles.

1) There is a wonderful article by David Sisca about the flag in which the unit is called the "First Regiment of the Continental Line of  The United States of America, Formerly Thompson’s Pennsylvania Rifle Battalion". It is on the web site of the American Tactical Shooting Association, featured article 09-2004, "Standard of the First Regiment of the Continental Line of The United States of America, Formerly Thompson's Pennsylvania Rifle Battalion"

This flag is a wonderful example of how ongoing research sometimes causes us to rethink our ideas as to historical flag designs. See Mr. Sisca's article for well done explanation of this puzzle. This flag was a long time stock item in the product line of the old Dettra Flag Company for whom we were a dealer. Back then they produced it not only in nylon but also in cotton! Since Dettra ceased operations we've had requests for this flag but no other flag manufacturer has ever made it for retail distribution; we had no other source. Now we've brought it back to life as a stock item in the now known to be correct version.

The October 1917 edition of National Geographic depicts the flag with the hunter on the hoist end.

Since at least as far back back as 1973, Dettra made the flag that way and even correctly showed the reverse type in the "PM 1st Rt" on what was though to be the flag's front. I was fortunate to  have just a few of these Dettra 4x6" flags showing the now incorrect version.

There are no more left. This information remains here for archival purposes only.

But in my old 1984 Dettra catalog, they had begun making the now known to be correct configuration. I suspect that in both 4x6" versions Dettra made the center canton proportionally larger than in their 3x5' version so that the intricate artwork would be large enough in the small format to be appreciated.  This the black staff version.

There are no more of this black staff 4x6" version left. This information remains here for archival purposes only.