Archives Vexillology

A patron of the Archives stopped in and informed us he had just been to a vexillology conference. He asked if we had any textiles and banners, and were able to show him a few. He will return to the Archives to study them. In the mean time, we looked at one banner with a novice nod to vexillology.flag

Vexillology is the study of flags and banners. Vexologists study how flags change through time and how that knowledge can be used to understand how a country or organization evolved. Flags and banners can symbolize a country’s struggles, people, its culture, and virtues. This is a fascinating study, we have recently looked at a number of banners in our holdings, and the Slovenian American Society of Butte is a division of the St. Peter and Paul Society.  This organization came together December 21, 1892, to form a community of people of one country, they help each other through the process of integration into American Society. They sooth the immigrant’s soul, provide a place to go to speak their native language and share cultural activities.  The organizations also provide an essential sick and death benefit.   The Slovenian American banner is purple with gold lettering, fleur-de-lis, and stars.  The color of the flag could mean justice or sovereignty.  The Slovenian people fought to maintain their cultural independence, their language, written text, art, and music for over 1,500 years.  The gold speaks to generosity and elevation of the mind.  The symbols of the fleur-de-lis could speak to purity and light and the stars to independence.  It is a great textile piece and it was interesting to look at the piece with amateur eyes and the brief introduction to vexillology.



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