This flag was in use during the crusades and it was one of the national emblems of England as early as 1277. In 1497, this flag was flown by John and Sebastian Cabot on their voyages from England to Newfoundland and the North American continent, as well as by other English explorers. including Francis Drake, Sir Humphrey Gilbert and Sir Walter Raleigh. Even after the adoption of the British Union, which combined both the St. George’s cross and the St. Andrew’s cross, the St. George’s cross still was flown from the foremast of English ships. Thus, we see this flag above the Mayflower when it landed at Plymouth in 1620.