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Unidentified Flags or Ensigns (2005)

Flags submitted in 2005

Last modified: 2006-09-23 by rob raeside
Keywords: ufe | unidentified flags |
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Below is a series of images of flags that have been provided to FOTW, but which we have been unable to recognise. If you can identify any of these flags, please let us know! Contact the director. See also our page of Identified Flags to see flags we have figured out through this page.

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Old Swiss communal flag

by Martin Karner
[Click on flag for larger version; click here for version with people.]

Last September (2004) I took part in an excursion of the Swiss Society for Vexillology. We went to the "Lötschental" in the Valais (German: Wallis) canton to have a look at the old "communal flags" (Gemeindefahnen). The communes of the Lötschental have been united in one parish several centuries ago, that's why there's also a parochial flag ("Talschaftsfahne" / Talschaft = community of the valley). The flags that have been presented to us (it was the first time ever that they have been together on the same place) are different from the official communal flags. They're religious flags that are presented to the public only three times a year on occasion of certain Christian and special Catholic holidays (the Lötschental is Catholic like the whole Valais). During our visit a man from one of those villages (Ferden; today he lives in Berne) joined us and asked if we could help him to find the owner of a certain flag. I offered him to place his request on the Francovex list because the owner is supposed to live in France. Some time later this man sent me photos of the flag and photocopies of the correspondence which took place between February 1991 and January 1993 with follow-ups until 2003. Because there was no answer on Francovex up to now I expand the search to this page, maybe the searched flag has made its way outside the francophone area.

I reported the previous search for this flag in details on Francovex which I don't repeat now. Whoever is interested may contact me for details. I'm also in possession of the letter correspondence which report the research about the origins of this flag (the research was made by the vexillologist Michel Rochat from Geneva). This flag is one of the above mentioned old religious communal flags of the Ferden commune (it's not known how this flag left Ferden. The communal archives have not been searched yet for this). The writings on the flag are "G.F." (=Gemeinde Ferden) and "1788". To make it short: Michel Rochat was one of two middlemen between the owner of the flag and the Ferden commune who wanted to buy back its old flag. During the negotiations the connections suddenly broke and the commune hadn't anymore a connection to the owner who lived in Paris. From unknown reasons Michel Rochat didn't want to communicate anymore about this flag and its owner. Last autumn there was the last try to speak with him on this matter but this time it was his mental weakness (due to his high age) which disabled him to remember. We know that the Ferden commune is still interested to buy this flag, that's why we try on this way to find out something about its whereabouts. I got two photos from 1992/93 in a not too good quality above. One of the photos shows the owner and two women. Please mail us if you know something about these persons and/or the flag. Thank you for your help.

Martin Karner, 8 January 2005

Red-yellow-green with runner

I am looking for the origin of a flag that has a red stripe, then a yellow square with a red runner in the center of the flag over the yellow square, and ending with a green stripe. Can you help me? Working in a school we find all kinds of things packed away in file cabinets. This was on a roll of tiny flags that the secretary found. The students for history used the internet to find which flag belong to which country. They found all but a few. Some of the students are really curious to see where this one came from. It could be from anywhere or from any event. Was hoping you could help.
Randy Cooper, 2 February 2005

If the countries were all those that competed at some international sports event, say, then this might be the flag of that event.
James Dignan, 7 February 2005

School in Kobe, Japan

I wonder if you might have seen this flag. I thought at first that it was Manchukuo (Manshukoku), but now I'm not so sure. This was taken, I'm told, in the 1880s in Kobe. It appears to be a mission school, or some kind of Christian school, as the boys all have crosses on their uniforms. Any information will be helpful.
Thomas Barr, 2 February 2005

This five stripes flag has nothing to do with Manchukou or Chinese five stripes flag if the picture was taken in Kobe circa 1880's, because (1) Manchukou was established on March 1st 1932 and (2) Chinese 5 stripes national flag was adopted on February 10th 1912. I have not seen the flag before but this flag design is unusual in Japan. The most popular Japanese flag design is a centered emblem in one colour field such as national flag and most prefectural flags using only two colours.. We have stripes flag as rare case. This flag looks four or five colours and stripes which may result from Christian school as Thomas mentions. So what four or five colours were chosen to symbolize Christianity ?
Nozomi Kariyasu, 3 February 2005

In Christianity there are generally 5 colours that are used to represent the Christian story. first is green: represents God's creation of the universe and the world. Black: sin enters the world (the wages of sin is death). Red: represents Jesus Christ dying on the cross for our sins. White: represents the cleanliness, blamelessness of the souls of the human race once they have accepted Christ as their Lord and Saviour. The last is yellow or gold which represents heaven, the eternal resting place.
Justin Yip, 30 December 2005

Unidentified flags at an international meeting

located by Zach Harden

I see some flags that I might not have seen before. Between the African Union and Ethiopia flags, there are two flags that I cannot seem to make out what they are. Also, between the Arab Union and the Islamic Congress, there is a green flag with a black disk. The meeting flag is the flag that is in the middle of the table.
Zachary Harden, 4 February 2005

The flag that is white with a logo beside the Ethiopian flag is the Non-Aligned Movement. The logo is in the web at
J.L. Cepero, 8 July 2005
[See our page on the Non-Aligned Movement.]

Orange-white-green with blue stars

I saw this flag, can you please tell me what country this belong to - it has 3 parts (bands) - orange (top), white (with 5 or 7 blue stars), green (bottom).
Waiting to hear from you.

Irene Fernandez, 26 February 2005

Red-white-blue with three stars

I wonder if you could help me identify a flag I saw. It has 3 horizontal stripes: blue on top, white in the middle, and red on the bottom. The middle white stripe has 3 large blue stars in a horizontal line across the middle of the white stripe. I wonder if it is an obsolete flag, perhaps from the Yugoslavia, Bosnia, Serbia area? If you know what this flag represents, will you please write back and let me know? Thanks.
Mabel Gunther, 1 March 2005

Four cap badges


Four more cap badges needing identification - probably shipping companies.
Bill Johnston, 15 March 2005

One of the cap badges is that of the Libby Line (i.e. the one with the word "Libby"). This was one of the major shipping lines of the 20th century. It still exists, but is now mostly involved in the container traffic.
Michael Faul, 17 July 2005

The last image in the line is the flag of the Argentine company: Compańia Argentina de Navegación Mihanovich Ltda.
Jan Mertens, 5 August 2005

Black-white-red tricolour flag

I was sailing in the San Francisco Bay when we saw a ship at dock flying a flag the looked very much like the French national flag, except one of the stripes was a very distinct black, rather than blue. The ship had two flags (large on in stern, small one in bow) and they were both the same so it wasn't a case of us mistaking a dark navy blue for black; it was distinctly black.
So... the inevitable, what flag was it?
Nathaniel Meyers, 20 April 2005

The only black, white and red vertical tricolour I can think of is that of Udmurtia, but I cannot see how such a flag could appear in San Francisco Bay, and in any case, this one seems to have been lacking the solar sign from its centre?
Christopher Southworth, 20 April 2005

Fleur-de-lys flag

by Luc Baronian

A strange commercial-looking white fleur-de-lis on a blue field forwarded to me by Quebec's Protocol Officer, Patrice DeLaBrosse.
Luc Baronian, 3 May 2005

Could it be some sort of Scout emblem?
Ron Lahav, 3 May 2005

I think the fleur-de-lys is designed to spell out the letters FSC - but I don't know what they stand for. Ron mentioned scouts - could some combinations of Federation Scouts Canada work? Just guessing here.
Rob Raeside, 3 May 2005

I also thought it looked like an F key and a G key (musical keys), somewhat abstractly, but still... Or else, if they are initials, the last letter could also be an E, I guess.
Luc Baronian, 3 May 2005

European 19th-20th Century flag

by Kevin John Franklin

A friend of mine approached me with a flag which he has been trying to get identified for quite some time now. It is suspected to be either central or eastern European in origin. He received it from his grandmother and it is thought to be from the 19th century. The image is only on one side of the fabric and he has two of these flags both identical with no makers tags or other forms of identification. It would be greatly appreciated if you could aid in the identification of this flag.
Kevin John Franklin, 23 May 2005

I don't think, this eagle looks very German. Especially this "drop" at its bill let me think more of an East European eagle. Definitely it is not the eagle of the emperor of Germany.
J. Patrick Fischer, 30 December 2005

I'm not even sure, if this is really a flag! Perhaps it's a tapestry or tablecloth? The eagle looks different from any eagle I have seen. It is *definitely* not German, that's sure.
Marcus E.V. Schmöger, 8 January 2006

Blue pennant with red cross on white disk

by Jorge Candeias

One of my mystery files is an image sent in 1999 with the filename cross-pen.gif. A search in my archives, this time, produces some results, but no identification. The image was subject of the following conversation:

At 19:37 23-03-1999, Edward Mooney, Jr. wrote:
While away this weekend I saw a photo of this pennant flying at the top of the main mast of a sailing ship. A small Union Jack/Ensign(?) *appeared* to be at the stern of the boat (it was obscured). Is it a yacht club ensign? Anyone have any ideas?

Then, at 01:25 25-03-1999, Roy Stilling replied:
From its shape - a broad pennant like a naval commodore's - I would guess it's some sort of yachting command flag, perhaps the flag of the commodore of the club in question. I can't find any clues as to which one in any of my books though.

And at 06:35 25-03-1999, so did John S. Ayer:
A burgee or pennant in that position should be either a club burgee or a personal signal. I have found a couple of club burgee sites, but don't recognize that flag. From European waters, did you say?

All I can say is what it's not - it is not the burgee of any yacht club which is presently entitled to fly a Blue Ensign (either plain or defaced), or a defaced Red Ensign (although thought I'd seen it somewhere and it is rather like the fly of the Poole Yacht Club Ensign - but not their burgee). It may, of course, be the pennant of a club commodore, or a variation on the normal burgee shape, of a club which can only fly the undefaced Red Ensign, or (has been suggested) a personal flag of some sort?
Christopher Southworth, 1 June 2005

A triangular version, in which the arms of the St George's cross are narrower, is shown in the British Isles section of "Yacht Club Burgees" by Colin Stewart as St George's Sailing Society .
David Prothero, 2 June 2005

Dniester Republic UFE

by André Coutanche

[Click on image for bigger version.]

More from 'Holidays in the Danger Zone'! The attached screen grab is part of the opening titles, so there is no context. However, one of the subjects in this series is the (Trans-)Dniestr Republic, so I am guessing that this shot may come from that programme since the flag uses the red and green which we show and the writing, both on the flag and in the background, is Cyrillic.
André Coutanche, 2 June 2005

Unknown Lion's Head flag

by Clay Moss

This flag is in our school's flag collection (Penang, Malaysia), and we don't know what it is.
Clay Moss, 12 June 2005

Ship funnel logo: red star and C

by Char

I was wondering if you would be able to help me identify this ocean liner/ships logo. I appreciate any help that you would be able to provide. [The file name was b137.jpg, in case anyone can find that in a listing.]
Char, 28 June 2005

This looks to be the old marking for the Columbia Transport Company out of Cleveland, Ohio, a company that sailed ships on the Great Lakes. This marking was phased out a few years ago and replaced with a new marking when the company consolidated its operations under the parent company: Oglebay Norton. The coloring of the new logo remained the same though. One very famous ship that sailed under the Columbia marking was the Edmund Fitzgerald. This boat sank in a terrible gale on November 10, 1975, will all 29 sailors lost. I have attached sketches of both the Columbia Transport logo and the newer Oglebay Norton logo for comparison.
David Marvin, 5 August 2005

Unidentified flag in Gaspésie

Unidentified flag in Gaspesie by Luc-Vartan Baronian, 22 January 1998

Here is a most interesting flag and may I add very beautiful flag. It was spotted by Donald Gauthier and we think it's from the Gaspésie/Iles-de-la-Madeleine administrative region of Quebec. Anyway, Donald is pursuing his researches, meanwhile if any of you has a clue about this Unidentified Flag or Ensign (UFE), we will appreciate any contribution.
Luc-Vartan Baronian, 22 January 1998

Scottish fisherman's wedding flag

Scottish fisherman's wedding flag image located at by James Dignan, 2 November 2005

[Note image shown at is artificially stretched horizontally. Image copyrighted by Scottish Fisheries Museum.]

The image is labeled "Title: Fisherman's wedding flag". Anyone know anything about this?
James Dignan, 2 November 2005

Gyronny with double-tailed lion

gyronny with double-tailed lion image by Mark Satterfield, 24 November 2005

Any help in identifying this flag would be appreciated.
Mark Satterfield, 24 November 2005

The gyronny and double-tailed lion reminded me of the Flanders area or perhaps the Netherlands?
Christopher Southworth, 25 November 2005

I think it's a house flag: Bayerischer Lloyd (Bavarian Lloyd).
Jan Mertens, 24 November 2005

There is a photo of some Bayerischer Lloyd document - a stock certificate I suppose - at In the circles at each corner are illustrations of the flag superimposed on an anchor. While this does not confirm the colors of the flag, I think Jan's identification is almost certainly correct.
Ned Smith, 25 November 2005

Some info from indicates (my translation)
The company was founded in 1913 and became a limited company in 1917. It was an inland shipping company. After the Süddeutsche Donau-Schiffahrts-Gesellschaft became Austrian in 1911 the Bavarians wanted their own shipping company on the Danube, wherefore the Bavarian Lloyd was founded.
Which does not explain the double-tailed lion - Bohemian?
Jarig Bakker, 25 November 2005