People started sewing as long as 20,000 years ago, during the last Ice Age.
Archaeologists have discovered bone needles with eyes, used to sew together skins and furs, dating back to this time.
Be extremely wary of internet auctions, take everything you hear with a grain of salt, and ask a lot of questions.
(2) Read as much as you can, and look at as many examples as possible.
Sewn flags are constructed by machine sewing, hand sewing, or by a combination of both, and were intended for long term use. They were intended for short-term use at parades, political rallies, and other events.
A book called The Stars and The Stripes by Mastai is the best reference text for American National Flags.
While out-of-print, The Stars and The Stripes is widely available from used book dealers.
The sewing machine is also noteworthy for the marketing advances used to sell it.
Most importantly of all, how would all the moving parts be coordinated?The company was founded by Thomas White, who had some prior experience in sewing machine manufacture.