Betsy Ross and the American Flag


Affidavit of Sophia B. Hildebrant,
Daughter of Clarissa S. Wilson and Granddaughter
of Elizabeth Claypoole (Betsy Ross)

I remember to have heard my grandmother Elizabeth Claypoole frequently narrate the circumstance of her having made the first Star Spangled Banner; that it was a speciman flag made to the order of the committee of Congress, acting in conjunction with General Washington, who called upon her personally at her store in Arch Street, below Third Street, Philadelphia, shortly before the Declaration of Independence; that she said that General Washington made a redrawing of the design with his own hands after some suggestions made by her; and that this specimen flag was exhibited in Congress by the committee, with a report, and the flag and report were approved and adopted by the Congress; and she received an unlimited order from the committee to make flags for the government, and to my knowledge she continued to manufacture the government flags for about fifty years, when my mother succeeded her in the business, in which I assisted. I believe the facts stated in the foregoing article, entitled "The First American Flag, and Who Made It," are all strictly true.

Witness my hand at Philadelphia the Twenty-seventh day of May A.D. 1870.

Witnesses present.
Isaac R. Oakford
Charles H. Evans

S.B. Hildebrandt.

State of Pennsylvania,
City of Philadelphia SS

On the Twenty-seventh day of May A.D. 1870, Before me Charles H. Evans, a Notary Public in and for the Common-wealth of Pennsylvania, duly commissioned, residing in the said City of Philadelphia personally appeared the within named Sophia B. Hildebrandt, who being duly affirmed did depose and say that the statements within certified to by her are all strictly true, according to the best of her knowledge and belief, and that she is a daughter of Clarissa S. Wilson, who was a daughter of Elizabeth Claypoole.

Affirmed and subscribed before
me, this day and year aforesaid.

Witness my hand and Notarial seal.

Charles H. Evans
Notary Public.

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