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Exhibit item: HENRY LEWIS FORD, The Bear Flag Revolution in California: manuscript, 1851

Exhibit item:
HENRY LEWIS FORD
The Bear Flag Revolution in California: manuscript, 1851

California pioneer Henry L. Ford described the origins and creation of the first flag for the California Republic in his dictation for Hubert Howe Bancroft.

Quotation:
JACOB N. BOWMAN
California Blue Book, 1903

"The very first version of a flag for the California Republic, created by members of the Bear Flag Revolt, included a grizzly bear. H.L. Ford suggested that a grizzly bear should be used, as the animal was distinctive to the region. The idea was approved, and the bear was painted on the flag and beneath it were the words: 'California Republic.' The participants, known as 'Bear Men' obtained paint from a nearby wheelwright's shop, and the crude artistic rendering execution was described by some as more resembling a pig than a bear."

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