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Pilot Flag 1894-1926 (Spain)

Last modified: 2005-02-12 by santiago dotor
Keywords: pilot | bordure (white) |
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[Pilot Flag 1894-1926 (Spain)]
by Željko Heimer
Flag adopted 1894, abolished 1926

See also:


Spanish pilot flag as it appears in both National Geographic 1917 and in a scan from Jarig Bakker of Webster's New International Dictionary, circa 1924.

Phil Nelson, 30 December 1999

This is shown in Calvo and Grávalos 1983 (illustration 555, pages 196-197) as "Insignia de Práctico de los Puertos (1923-1931). Bandera mercante con orla blanca", i.e. "Harbours' Pilot Ensign 1923-1931. Civil ensign with white bordure". So this one appears to have actually been a pilot ships' ensign and not be a pilot call flag.

Santiago Dotor, 4 January 2000

The case of pilot flags is a bit different from other flags. If a source mentions a flag as a 'pilot flag' one should trust that source as meaning "I need a pilot!" — especially in shallow unknown waters and in areas where one could not be sure that the Blue Peter or the G-flag were sufficiently known. In several cases (United States and Russia for instance) the jacks were used to call for pilots. That was sufficently unusual as to be recognized.

Jarig Bakker, 4 January 2000

National Geographic 1917 shows a pilot flag in the yellow-red-yellow-red-yellow 1+1+2+1+1 pattern, with white border.

Željko Heimer, 6 August 2001

The pilot flag shown in National Geographic 1917 was adopted 1894 and abandoned at some point in 1926. For a very short period thereafter, until late 1927 or early 1928, a flag like the 1894-1926 one was used but with a black, serif 'P' on the middle yellow stripe. This was replaced by a flag showing the red-yellow-red flag with a white border and the same letter 'P' on the middle stripe, which in turn was replaced 1931 with a very similar flag but displaying the Republican (red-yellow-purple) colours. Pilot flags were abolished after the 1936-1939 war and never readopted.

Santiago Dotor, 4 September 2001