Continental Schottisch


This chromolithograph from 1860 is the cover illustration to the sheet music “Continental Schottisch,” composed by O.P. Perry and dedicated to S.E. Stevens. The image shows the Continental Hotel, located at the southeast corner of Ninth and Chestnut Streets in Philadelphia. The hotel was built 1857–60 after designs by architect John McArthur Jr. (1823–90). In front of the hotel is street and pedestrian traffic, including horse-drawn carriages, an omnibus, and couples on promenade. Around the scene is an ornate and vivid border containing American flags, vinery, and a vignette showing the Philadelphia coat of arms. The lithographer, Thomas S. Sinclair (circa 1805–81), was born in the Orkney Islands of Scotland and was active in Philadelphia by 1833, where he soon had his own business and was one of the first local printmakers to experiment with color lithography. A practical lithographer throughout his career, Sinclair produced all genres of lithographs, including maps, advertisements, city and landscape views, sheet music covers, portraiture, political cartoons, certificates, and book illustrations.

Last updated: January 9, 2018