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Steel Plate engravings of the 19th century


Hinton's History and Topography of the United States (First Edition):

Prints from John H. Hinton's The History and Topography of the United States of North America. London: Hinton & Simpkin & Marshall, 1831. 3 5/8 x 5 5/8. Steel engravings by Fenner, Sears & Co.

A lovely series of steel engravings from one of the more popular nineteenth century view books, Hinton's History and Topography. This work contained text and numerous illustrations documenting the history and topography of the United States. Hinton used many different artists, all the engravings being made from drawings made on the spot. For their wide coverage, accurate detail, and pleasing appearance, these are amongst the finest small images of early nineteenth century America.

Palisades on the Hudson G. Oakley Esqr. "The Palisade Rocks on the Hudson River, West Bank, New York." $55

Hinton: New York J. Dupree. "New York." $75

Hinton: St. Paul's, Broadway A.J. Davis. "St. Pauls, Broadway, N.Y." $70



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Roux de Rochelle's Etats-Unis d'Amérique:

Prins from Jean B.G. Roux de Rochelle's Etats-Unis d'Amérique. Paris: Firmin Didot frères, [1837]. Steel engravins.

This illustration and its companions were by the French Minister to the U.S., Roux de Rochelle. His account of his time in the United States included 96 images and it was first issued in 1837 as part of a larger series entitled L'Univers. The work and its plates were reissued in several French editions, one Italian edition in 1839, and one Spanish edition in 1841. They form one of the most interesting series of views of the United States from the first half of the nineteenth century. The multiple issues of this series in Europe and the capability of steel engravings to produce a very large number of prints insures that these images were the most often and widely seen views of American people, places and events in the first half of the nineteenth century.

Eglise St. Paul Arnout. "Eglise St. Paul à New York." 5 x 3 3/4. Engraved by Traversier. $45



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William Henry Bartlett's American Scenery:

View of New York from Weehawken From American Scenery. London: George Virtue, 1838-40. Each ca. 4 1/2 x7 1/2. Engravings. Hand color. Very good condition.

William Henry Bartlett (1809-1854) was a British landscape artist famous for his views of all parts of the world. He made several trips to the United States in order to gather sketches for a book about American scenery to be written by N.P. Willis and published by George Virtue. This work, American Scenery, discussed the natural wonders, architectural monuments and city landmarks of America, and the text was accompanied by a charming collection of views of these sites drawn by Bartlett. This was one of the most successful and popular series of such views of the nineteenth century. Of all images of America's past, these remain among the most popular.

GoGo to Bartlett page of views of New York State



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First Baptist Church "First Baptist Church. New-York City." From the New-York Chronicle. New York: Holman & Gray, 1849. 4 5/8 x 3 5/8. Steel engraving.

A mid-19th century view of the First Baptist Church of New York, founded in 1745. Issued in another illustrated magazine. $45


New York "New York." London: J. & P. Tallis, 1850. 6 1/4 x 7 1/8. Steel engraving.

An unusual, handsome view of the city by the British publishing firm of J. & P. Tallis. $70


The United States Illustrated

Prints from Charles A. Dana's The United States Illustrated. New York: Herrmann J. Meyer, 1853. 4 x 6. Steel engravings.

Herrmann J. Meyer and his father, Joseph Meyer, were German publishers of an illustrated travel series called Meyer's Universum. Joseph Meyer very much admired the United States and sent his son to establish a publishing house in New York. Herrmann proceeded to publish an American edition of the Universum, but also desired to publish a new series of his own called, The United States Illustrated. Meyer enlisted the services of Charles A. Dana editor of the New York Tribune to serve as editor of the series. Unfortunately, the series did not do well, and Meyer decided to return to Germany. After the death of his father, he assumed control of their Bibliographischen Institut which is still in business today.

New York from Governor's Island Kummer. "New York from Governor's Island." $75

View from Gowanus Heights "View from Gowanus Heights. (Brooklyn.)" $75


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Hell Gate A. Dick. "Hell Gate. From Great Barn Islands." 5 x 7 1/4. Engraved by Dick. Hand colored $65

New Brighton, vicinity of NY Chapman. "New Brighton in the Vicinity of New York." 5 x 8. Engraved by Rolph. With creases.

An unusual view of Staten Island, at the site of Sailor's Snug Harbor. $110

St. Stephen's Church W. Bayley Esq. "St. Stephen's Church. Rev. Joseph H. Price, D.D. Rector." 6 3/4 x 4 1/2. Engraved by J.F.E. Prud'homme. $60


Hinton's History and Topography of the United States (Fifth American Edition)

Prints from 5th American Edition of John H. Hinton's The History and Topography of the United States of North America. Boston: 1861. Steel engravings.

Davis after Smith: New York J.A. Davis after J.R. Smith. "New York." 5 1/4 x 7 3/4. Engraved by J. Archer. Hand color. A later edition with three paddle-wheel boats added. $70


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Charles Magnus

Print by Chas. Magnus & Co. New York, circa 1865-70. Steel engraving.

During the mid-nineteenth century, the firm of Charles Magnus published a tremendous volume of small views and maps for various publications. Centered in New York, the firm worked diligently to create detailed views and maps of many American cities and scenes. This small view is certainly no exception.

Birds Eye view of New York "Bird's Eye View of the City and County of New-York with Environs." 4 3/4 x 7 3/4 (image) plus full margins. With Brooklyn at bottom right and New Jersey at top left the flourishing city extends to the edge of present-day Central Park. A vast array of ships are in the two rivers. $175


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Beckwith: Bay of New York Beckwith. "Bay of New York (from the Narrows)." From A Landscape Book by American Artists and American Authors. New York: G.P. Putnam & Son, 1868. 4 1/2 x 6 5/8. Steel engraving by Beckwith. Excellent condition.

Following the American Civil War people wanted to put the unpleasantness behind them and contemplate the beauties of the expanding and vivacious United States of America. A retreat from the Industrial Revolution called for excursions into the beautiful landscapes throughout the northeastern part of the country. Fine paintings by the most famous artists were selected for this series: Thomas Cole, Frederic Church, Jasper Cropsey, Asher B. Durand, Regis Gignoux, Daniel Huntington, John Frederick Kensett, William Miller, T. Addison Richards, James Smillie, Jesse Talbot, and Robert W. Weir. A fine example of steel engraving used to interpret oil paintings. $75


Terrace, Central Park C. Rosenberg. "The Terrace, Central Park. New York." From Picturesque America. New York: D. Appleton & Co., 1873. 5 3/8 x 9 3/8. Steel engraving. Hand color. Excellent condition.

One of a charming set of prints from Picturesque America, a book inspired by the prose of William Cullen Bryant. This two volume set and others of its genre were very popular during the mid-nineteenth century. Through their ample illustrations they provided a glimpse of nineteenth century America-much more bucolic than today-its towns, rivers, ports, important architecture, and other areas of interest. An inspiration behind the publication was the forthcoming Centennial celebration of the United States to be held in Philadelphia in 1876, and this volume celebrates the variety and majesty of the maturing country. As stated by Sue Rainey, in her excellent Creating 'Picturesque America.', "As the first publication to celebrate the entire continental nation, it enabled Americas, after the trauma of the Civil War, to construct a national self-image based on reconciliation between North and South and incorporation of the West." (p. xiii) $80


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