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Raven: A Journal of Vexillology

Volume 15, 2008

Lane J. Harris
Pages 81-105
DOI: 10.5840/raven2008154

Standard Messages: Institutional Identity and Symbolism in Chinese Postal Flags, 1896–1949

The Chinese post office used flags to mark its facilities—buildings and vehicles—during an era when it served as one of the only unifying institutions in an otherwise fractured nation ruled by factions, warlords, and quasi-states. From the “Flying Goose” to the “automatic canceller mark”, its flag designs invoked speed, loyalty, and reliability.