Libcom also hosts a gallery of Black Flag cover art here.
Black Flag began life as the Bulletin of the Anarchist Black Cross in 1968.
The Bulletin was renamed Black Flag at volume 2 issue 1 in January 1971.
The Bulletin was originally intended to note the activities and existence of the Black Cross, but the spread of anarchist activism in the sixties made us the focus. There was a demand for an anarchist newspaper, as Freedom had become increasingly bourgeois pacifist, partly because nobody else would work under the direction of Richards and his little group of self-styled intellectuals. When at a demonstration a policeman was alleged to have been injured falling off the horse on which he was dispersing the crowd, and the suggestion was made in Freedom that anarchists should get up a collection for him, the limit was reached. The former Cuddon’s group constituted itself into a Black Flag collective.
After the Bulletin became Black Flag we had many editors for the next twenty odd years, at one time rotating the editorship per issue. Apart from a few of these issues I remained one of the editors throughout. Stuart [Christie] remained an editor for the first five years, but so far as the press or the know-all academic twits are concerned, he remains so to this day. His brief summer of notoriety had made him a historically referable person in spite of their trying to write him off at the same time.
Albert Meltzer – I Couldn’t Paint Golden Angels (1996, chapter 13)
An initial attempt at a format/schedule summary
Volume 1: 1968-1970. Bulletin of the Anarchist Black Cross.
Volume 2: January 1971-January 1973. 15 issues. Monthly. Black Flag – Bulletin of the Anarchist Black Cross.
Volume 3: March 1973-April 1975. 19(?) issues. Monthly. Black Flag – Organ of the Anarchist Black Cross.
Volume 4: May 1975-1977 15 issues. Monthly.
Volume 5: July 1977-January 1980. 13 issues. Monthly.
Volume 6: March 1980-June 1982. 12(?) issues.
Volume 7: 1983-1985 Initially monthly and then fortnightly newsletter (Issue 2a, 2b etc). Black Flag: Anarchist Fortnightly. Plus Quarterly Magazine. Black Flag: Journal of Anarchist Ideas, News and Comments.
Numbered issues – 1985 onwards. No “Volumes”. Black Flag: For Anarchist Resistance.
Issue 201 November 1990.
Issue 202 November 1991.
Issue 203 Autumn 1993. Relaunch as quarterly magazine with glossy two colour cover.
Issue 218 1999. Full colour cover. Annual or biannual from then on.
Issue 226 2007. Relaunch with new collective. Black Flag.
Black Flag was relaunched as an online journal in March 2021: https://www.blackflag.org.uk/