Historic Flag Displayed at the Ohio Statehouse
May 22, 2020

36-Star Flag in Ohio Statehouse Rotunda
An historic Thirty-Six Star American Flag is on display in the Ohio Statehouse Rotunda. The 155-year-old flag was flown over Capitol Square in 1865 when the body of Abraham Lincoln lay in repose in the Rotunda of the Ohio Statehouse. The display includes an exhibit of Civil War artifacts related to the Lincoln funeral train. This exhibit is open to the public in the Ohio Statehouse Rotunda this weekend until Veterans Day. The Ohio Statehouse is closed Monday for Memorial Day.

The Capitol Square Review and Advisory Board (CSRAB) welcomes the return of the Thirty-Six Star flag that flew over Capitol Square during the repose of President Abraham Lincoln, on April 29, 1865. The flag originally was presented to David Nevin Murray of Portsmouth, Ohio for his contributions to the war effort on behalf of the Union Army during the American Civil War.

Since then, Murray and succeeding members of his family lent the flag for parades, memorials, and special events, including the inaugurations of Governor John W. Bricker and Governor Frank Lausche at the Ohio Statehouse. In 1945, the flag hung in the Ohio Statehouse Rotunda as a memorial for President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

The flag was donated to the Ohio History Connection in 2016 by David N. Murray’s great, great granddaughters, Lt. Colonel Mary K. Van Tilburg and Dr. Emmalou Van Tilburg. The flag is on loan from the Ohio History Connection until Veterans Day.

Included in this display is an exhibit of artifacts related to the Lincoln funeral journey on loan from the descendants of Brig. General John C. Caldwell, a member of the Guard of Honor on Abraham Lincoln’s funeral train in 1865.
[Update, 6-1-2020.] A historic 1865 newspaper from the time of Lincoln's death can be seen in the display. It is on loan from Ray DiRossi, a staff member for the Ohio Senate.
The Ohio Statehouse is open to the public during working hours. Social distancing and face coverings are encouraged. Guided tours have been postponed until further notice. The Ohio Statehouse is closed on Memorial Day and on state holidays.

Pictures available at

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