Bicycle Flags | Beatles memorabilia
Updated: Feb 19
As you are bound for your friend's house on your bicycle to listen to the latest Beatles record, you gaze at the flags attached to your handlebars, watching the Fab Four wave and flap in the breeze as you zoom down the road. What a beautiful Beatle-filled moment you'll never forget!
Those items flapping in the wind were a set of five, 6"x4" white plastic flags that attached to bicycle handlebars. One flag had "The Beatles" printed on it in dark blue ink, and the other four were individual drawings of each Beatle playing an instrument, with first-name facsimile signatures also displayed.
The flags were sold in a plastic bag that also contained five, 10½" black, golden-topped wooden sticks to steady the flags and a metal holder attachment connecting the items to your handlebars. Printed on the package in red ink was "Official The Beatles 5 Flag Bicycle Set", and not-the-best graphic images of the band (in blue ink), stars and music notes, a young lad with all of the flags attached to his bike, and instructions to assemble the item:
"ASSEMBLY INSTRUCTIONS for bicycle and scooters. Remove center bolt of handlebar. Insert holder and replace bolt. Bend stem to desired angle."
The handlebar attachment was metal and had a manufacturing notation: "Metal Brand PAT PENDING."
Shipped to retail stores in a plain brown envelope titled "12-B-2 BEATLE BICYCLE FLAG SET," it's interesting to note that the images on the flags were the same ones that the company used on one of their Beatles pennants.
The flags were made by American Flag & Banner, the same company that made the licensed US pennants. The American Flag & Banner Company was named in a NEMS Enterprises, Ltd vs. Seltaeb, Incorporated lawsuit filed in the Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of the State of New York, First Judicial Department, dated: New York, New York, July 6, 1965.
On a side note, American Flag and Banner was involved in a lawsuit by the government dated May 28, 1965, GSBCA No. 1391. Contract number GS-00S-45768. They were said to be delinquent 'to fulfill the government's needs for flags' they agreed (on Feb. 19, 1963) to produce.