Battle-Scarred D-Day Flag Tops $1 Million Arms & Armor Sale at Heritage Auctions

Bid: Heritage Historical June 11, 2017 Arms and Armor, Civil War and Militaria AuctionHeritage Auctions’ June 11 Arms & Armor, Civil War & Militaria Auction in Dallas sold $1 million with Lieutenant William L. Willhoit’s D-Day Battle-Scarred Flag taking top lot honors at $55,000. The exceedingly rare Operation Overlord and Neptune “Situation Map” owned and used by Gen. Omar Bradley made its auction debut and hammered for $43,750. The auction was 93 percent sold by lot.

“This flag is not only memorable because of the pivotal days it was flown, it is momentous because of the story that comes with it.” said Jason Watson, Arms & Armor Consignment Director at Heritage. “Ensign Wilhoit, a true American hero, assumed command of the LCT 540 after his officer-in-charge was killed in the first moments of the assault. Despite his young age, Wilhoit persisted and continued to fight and lead for the next four days of the landing.”

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Additional flags highlighted at the auction included a 34-Star, Battle of Antietam, Blood-Stained Flag that realized a high-flying $27,500 following interest from three bidders and a 35-Star Company K Silk Cavalry Guidon which sold for $8,750.

A unique assortment of guns were offered led by a Fine Colt Model 1860 Army Revolver, which ended at $16,250. A Colt with original blued finish, a Colt Single Action Army 45 realized $15,000 and was offered in the original Colt black box that was numbered to the gun. A stunning Fine & Engraved L.C. Smith Crown Grade Double Barrel Shotgun sold for $12,500, a scarce and highly-desirable Smith & Wesson .357 Magnum with original box and certificate realized $11,562 and a Colt Bisley Model Single Action Revolver from 1907 saw $10,000.

Historical pieces from the Civil War and both World Wars included an M4 Enigma Enciphering Machine from the wreck of the German submarine Ammerland. The elusive enciphering machine realized $21,875. A fantastic, painted Type A-2 Leather Flight Jacket decorated with the word “Mac’s High Hats” sold for $4,250 and a WWI Service Jacket with Belt and Overseas Hat reached $3,500.

A selection of Civil War memorabilia included a “Stonewall” Jackson V.M.I. Diploma Signed and Virginia Dialectic Society of Cadets Certificate, which sold for $5,750, a copper Battle of New Market: V.M.I. Cadet Award Medal realized $10,625 and Lt. Elisha Hunt Rhodes’ Union Officers’ Frock Coat hammered for $4,750.

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