Potter & Carmichael, Oil Cloth Manufacturers. Warehouse, Number 135, North Third Street, Philadelphia


William H. Rease, born in Pennsylvania circa 1818, was the most prolific lithographer of advertising prints in Philadelphia during the 1840s and 1850s. This advertisement shows the busy factory complex on Second Street above the Reading Railroad (i.e., 135 North Third Street above Race Street). A "Franklin-ville, Oilcloth Works" sign tops the roof of the main factory building around which workers stretch cloth on long flat racks. Cloth is also stretched down the sides of buildings. Other men move a roll of carpet into a hatch, load materials into a wagon in the courtyard, and transport materials by handcart and horse-drawn dray. Behind the smaller building, men work in and around a shed. Countryside frames the scene. The firm of Potter & Carmichael moved their warehouse to 135 North Third Street from 568 North Third Street (above Poplar Street) circa 1848. The partnership was dissolved in 1853. Rease became active in his trade around 1844, and through the 1850s he mainly worked with printers Frederick Kuhl and Wagner & McGuigan in the production of advertising prints known for their portrayals of human details. Although Rease often collaborated with other lithographers, by 1850 he promoted in O'Brien's Business Directory his own establishment at 17 South Fifth Street, above Chestnut Street. In 1855 he relocated his establishment to the northeast corner of Fourth and Chestnut Streets (after a circa 1853−55 partnership with Francis Schell), where in addition to advertising prints he produced certificates, views, maps, and maritime prints.

Date Created

Subject Date

Publication Information

Printed by F. Kuhl, Philadelphia


Title in Original Language

Potter & Carmichael, oil cloth manufacturers. warehouse, No. 135, North Third Street, Philadelphia

Type of Item

Physical Description

1 print : lithograph ; 22 x 46 centimeters


  • Digital catalog number: POS 618


  1. Rease, William H., Philadelphia on Stone Biographical Dictionary, Library Company of Philadelphia, http://www.lcpdigital.org
  2. Watson, John Fanning, Annals of Philadelphia, and Pennsylvania, in the Olden Time (Philadelphia: J.M. Stoddart and Company, 1877).

Last updated: September 2, 2015