THE BATTLE FOR GUADALCANAL: A 48 STAR ENSIGN FLOWN FROM TORPEDO BOAT PT-37. An American ensign flown from PT-37. 550 x 900 mm. the flag  with 48 stars on blue ground at upper left canton, on a red and white horizontal striped field,
Lot 275
THE BATTLE FOR GUADALCANAL: A 48 STAR ENSIGN FLOWN FROM TORPEDO BOAT PT-37.
An American ensign flown from PT-37. 550 x 900 mm. the flag with 48 stars on blue ground at upper left canton, on a red and white horizontal striped field,
Sold for US$ 13,750 inc. premium

Fine Books and Manuscripts

12 Jun 2018, 13:00 EDT

New York

Lot Details
THE BATTLE FOR GUADALCANAL: A 48 STAR ENSIGN FLOWN FROM TORPEDO BOAT PT-37.
An American ensign flown from PT-37. 550 x 900 mm. the flag with 48 stars on blue ground at upper left canton, on a red and white horizontal striped field, the hoist with 2 brass eyelets, stencilled both sides with "USN" and "PT 37." the flag completely stained and discolored by engine fumes and oil, the fly edge blown out, frayed and worn.

An historic PT Boat flag from the Battle of Guadalcanal. PT-37 was a 77 foot Elco Motor Torpedo Boat built and completed at Elco, Bayonne NJ in July 1941, and sent out to serve in the Pacific Theater in 1942. It saw extensive action in the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal from November 1942 to its destruction from enemy fire in February 1943. Fast (max speed 39 knots), and versatile Torpedo boats were an essential part of the armoury of the American Fleet at war. Armed with 2 browning M2 machine guns in turrets, and with 4 18 inch torpedoes, they were able to get inshore into shallower waters, and make quick attacks on the enemy. In the first engagements between the American and Japanese Navies 12-15th November 1942, around Savo Island, the American Navy managed to prevent the landing of new Japanese troops onto the coast and stop the Japanese Navy from bombarding the crucial Henderson Field In late January/Early February the Japanese 17th Army withdrew to the west coast of Guadalcanal, and by February 7th, Mikawa's 8th fleet under Admiral Hashimoto had evacuated 10,652 men from the battlefield, with minimal loss of ships. PT-37 is said to have been sunk by the Kamakaze during this evacuation.

Throughout the engagements of the two navies over 6 months in and around Iron Bottom Sound, the Japanese lost 18 vessels, most capital ships, while the American fleet lost 32 vessels including 4 PT Boats. It was a mighty struggle between the two powers, and the fourth meeting of the two fleets in the Pacific.
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  1. Ian Ehling
    Specialist - Books, Maps, Manuscripts and Historical Photographs
    Bonhams
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