Quantrill Bridle Flag Patches

Quantrill After the Partisan Ranger's hard-fought victory at Independence, Missouri there was time to care for the wounded. Mrs. R.T. Bass, a teenager at the time, remembered seeing the guerrilla captain as she assisted Dr. P.H. Henry. She wrote: "I saw Quantrill that day after the fighting was over, when he rode to the house to look after his wounded. He looked as little like the horrible, blood-thirsty bandit, he is usually described as, as it is possible to imagine. Instead of this, he was a modest, quiet, good-looking man, with blue eyes, light hair, gentle of manner and courteous as well, true as steel to his friends if implacable to his foes. I gave him a little silk flag, which pleased him very much."

In October 1930, the pictured flag above was presented to the Kansas State Historical Society by Orion W. Milliken, the son of Jonathan Milliken. Described as "the bridle flag of William C. Quantrill," this small banner is most likely the "little flag" presented to Quantrill after the battle of Independence Missouri. Olathe Kansas was not a "black flag raid," wherein no quarter was offered to the defenders of the town. Had it been, there would have been no Union parole afterward. There is no record of Quantrill having carried a traditional unit flag and this "bridle flag" may have been all the guerrilla captain felt was necessary. The cotton flag is 8"(hoist)x13" (fly; total including a 1/4"- 3/4"-wide heading along the hoist). The blue wool canton is 5"(hoist)x3-7/8"(fly). The field of the flag is composed of three bars, red/white/red, each 2-1/2" wide. Bordering the flag on three sides is 1/4"-wide white ribbon. On the blue canton is a device described as a "palmetto tree" (the Southern symbol of rebellion) or a "fist" on which is embroidered in blue script "Quant." The tree, if it is such, is 3-1/4" tall, 3" wide at the fronds, and 1-1/4" wide at the base. Curiously the device appears to be bloodstained. It was picked up at the southeast corner of the public square in Olathe Kansas on the morning of September 7, 1861, by Jonathan Milliken after Quantrill's departure.

Bumper Sticker
Quantrill Bridle Flag Patch
Dimensions Measure: 3⅜" wide by 2 ¼" tall



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