An expert on textiles pried open glass cases in the state capitol rotunda Wednesday to view over 100 Civil War battle flags. The 138 flags were placed in glass cases during a special holiday declared in 1894 and have remained there, virtually untouched, ever since. Fonda Thomsen is inspecting the flags for the State Historical Society of Iowa. Thomsen says they aren’t in very good shape.Thomsen emerged from one glass case covered in dust and some small pieces that had fallen off the flags.Thomsen says they want to find the best way to keep the flags from deteriorating any further.Thomsen will write a report for the Battle Flags Preservation Committee detailing her recommendations on preserving the flags. Thomsen has also done work on the flag which flew over Fort McHenry during the War of 1812 and inspired the “Star Spangled Banner.”.
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