James Montgomery Flagg The Navy Needs You! Don't Read American History - Make It! WW1 Circa 1917 Ultra RARE Iron-On Clothing Patch Military


Shipping to United States: Free

What is it?
This is an Iron-On clothing patch featuring the well-known work of James Montgomery Flagg (famous for his Uncle Sam "I Want You" piece that was used as a recruiting poster for World War 1).

The front is a beautiful rendition of the art piece depicting a Navy sailor talking to a man reading a newspaper trying to persuade him to enlist. In the background is a ship and American woman patriot with flag.

The back details the "Important Iron-On Instructions" (picture 2).

I believe it to be circa 1917 (same time as the posters production) due to the look and feel of it. It definitely looks at though it was used in the recruiting effort as a give away.

What size is it?
As shown in the main picture it is 3" by 2-1/4" (approximately).

What is the condition?
There is some very slight curling of the item (not much). The back shows a little yellowing from age. The picture is remarkably vivid without any blemishes (as far as I can tell). The edges and corners are crisp. It's apparent it hasn't been handled by anyone very much at all over the years.

What is it's value?
I found a lithograph poster of the same piece selling for $615 on January 8, 2015. The condition of the poster (as described by Skinner) was "damage along edges" (See 3rd and 4th pictures.)

This patch is much rarer than the posters. I can't find any information about production numbers of the patches, but I have to presume so many of them had to be applied to garments and/or handled, damaged, lost, thrown away, and so on, back in the day. Posters were at least displayed and for the most part kept. Furthermore, to have a patch that has been this well preserved and not abused from handling, it seems likely that they don't come much nicer than this.
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Shipping from United States

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Returns & Exchanges

I gladly accept returns, exchanges, and cancellations

Just contact me within: 14 days of delivery

Ship items back to me within: 30 days of delivery

Request a cancellation within: 0 hours of purchase

But please contact me if you have any problems with your order.

The following items can't be returned or exchanged

Because of the nature of these items, unless they arrive damaged or defective, I can't accept returns for:

  • Custom or personalized orders
  • Perishable products (like food or flowers)
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  • Intimate items (for health/hygiene reasons)

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Please contact me if you have any problems with your order.

Returns and exchange details

We will provide refunds for lost/damaged merchandise. Lost items will be refunded if item does not arrive within a month and after a lost mail report is filled by the customer with their local post office and the post office completes their investigation/search.

We will also accept returns for 30 days from date of shipment (minus shipping costs). Please contact us to arrange for a return.


Most of our items are vintage, so we usually cannot accommodate any request to customize an item to your preference. However, we can be on the lookout for an item you desire and let you know if we run across it in the future.


Please also understand that since these items are vintage, they may in fact show a little sign of wear, aging, or slight discoloration. If we list something as New Old Stock (NOS) or new, it will be in excellent condition. Any other characterization is subject to having some visible signs of degradation.


Most customers have success applying iron-on patches to their garments, however due to the age of some vintage patches and differences between manufacturers some people prefer to sew the patches on for a more secure application. Just keep in mind for vintage items that the glue is older and the fabric more susceptible to damage when handling.

But here is a general guide for applying iron-on patches.

Step 1: Set your hand iron at the hottest temperature setting. DO NOT USE STEAM DURING APPLICATION!
Step 2: Place your applique or embroidered patch in the desired position and place a pressing cloth (such as a handkerchief, sheet or pillowcase fabric) over top.
Step 3: Press the iron straight down for 35-45 seconds with as much constant pressure as possible. NO BACK AND FORTH.
Step 4: Turn the garment inside-out and repeat steps 2 & 3.
Step 5: Allow the applique or embroidered patch to cool down.

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