A. H. Eckhardt Soap and Candle Manufactory, Number 326 North Second Street, Philadelphia


George G. Heiss was a mid-19th century Philadelphia lithographer, who specialized in views of fire-fighting equipment. This lithograph advertisement shows the storefront of the Eckhardt soap and candle business on the 500 block of North Second Street between Noble and Green Streets. A store clerk, or possibly the proprietor, stands at the doorway, a quill in one hand and the other resting on a stack of boxes. He watches a laborer load boxes onto the Eckhardt horse-drawn wagon. Boxes, jars, crates, and other containers fill the large display window. The store also has poles for an awning, a side awning reading "A.H. Eckhardt Soap & Candle Manufacturer," advertising signs at the doorway, and a fire-insurance marker. Augustus H. Eckhardt ran the chandler business here in 1848−56. Soaps and candles were often produced by the same business in the 19th century because their manufacture required many of the same raw materials. Heiss was born in Philadelphia in 1823. He exhibited at the Artists' Fund Society 1840−43 and was also known as a portrait painter. He worked closely with Thomas Wagner and James McGuigan’s lithography studio from 1847 to 1855, when he opened his own establishment at 213 North Second Street. From then until the early 1860s, he mainly lithographed and published views of fire-fighting engines for local volunteer companies. Heiss published The Illustrated National Alphabet illustrated with lithographs in 1865. He left lithography in 1868 and established an artists’ materials emporium at 25 North 11th Street, which he operated until about 1885.

Last updated: September 2, 2015