December 29, 2015

P.S. Duval's Lithographic Establishment and Office of the U.S. Military Magazine, Published by Huddy and Duval. Number 7, Bank Alley, Philadelphia

This lithograph from 1839 depicts the four-story lithographic establishment of Peter S. Duval, one of the most prominent lithographers and printers of his day. The establishment, located at the northwest corner of Bank Alley and Dock Street (i.e., 227 Dock Street) in Philadelphia, was also the headquarters for Huddy & Duval, the firm that published the military fashion periodical, U.S. Military Magazine, between 1839 and 1842. In this view, a row of cavalry soldiers faces east on Dock Street as pedestrians, soldiers on foot, and a dog congregate on the sidewalks in the foreground. A signboard for a house painter adorns the adjacent property facing Dock Street and “Birch's Auctions” occupies the property at the west end of Bank Alley facing Third Street. The portico and columns of a stately building, probably part of the Merchant's Exchange, are visible across from the Duval establishment. The Dock Street building was demolished in 1924. This illustration was printed on the upper portion of a sheet of stationery paper and subsequently pasted onto the front flyleaf of a volume of the magazine. Below the illustration is a hand-written form letter signed by William M. Huddy and P.S. Duval, outlining the prices of “coloured” and “plain” plates. Born circa 1804 or 1805 in France, Duval emigrated from France to Philadelphia in the fall of 1831 to accept a job as a lithographer with the printing firm of Childs & Inman. By 1837 he had established his lithographic printing shop; he remained in business until his retirement in 1869. Huddy, born in Philadelphia in 1807, was a military artist, lithographer, publisher, and editor active in Philadelphia in the late 1830s and early 1840s. The two men were partners in Huddy & Duval until 1842, when the magazine and partnership ceased operations.

View of the United States Hose House and Apparatus, Philadelphia

This tinted lithograph from circa 1851 is a keepsake print showing the firehouse on Tamany (i.e., Buttonwood) Street, just south of York Avenue in Philadelphia. Members of the volunteer hose company are seen racing the hose carriage around the corner. Firefighters, most wearing gear, pull the carriage, run from behind the vehicle, and don their uniforms in the entry to the firehouse. The firehouse contains an iron-work veranda and a tower from which a volunteer stands and points, directing the company. Adjacent to the station house and on the corner stands “Tamany Hall,” an oyster house adorned in signage, including street signs and the name of proprietor, “Jas. Griffiths.” The proprietor stands at his doorway, a server watches from outside, and a patron rushes out a rear entry. The grocery store of “Tunis O. Bancroft” is at the opposite corner. A female clerk stands in the doorway. Merchandise displays, including brooms and buckets, line the storefront. The store owner, attired in an apron and a top hat, stands in front of the store under an awning, watching the commotion. Another hose carriage, ornately decorated, is parked nearby in the street. A small toolbox, bucket, and sponge lie in the street next to the apparatus. The scene also includes the neighboring residential buildings on the block and around the corner. The United States Hose Company was instituted on July 4, 1826, and incorporated on March 13, 1833. In November 1851, Baltimore held a celebration for firemen in cooperation with Washington D.C. that was attended by the United States Hose Company. The United States Hose Company reciprocated by hosting the Independent Fire Company of Baltimore during the 1852 celebration and parade held in Philadelphia. This print contains an inscription at the bottom reading: “View of the United States Hose House & Apparatus, Philadelphia. To the Independent Fire Co. of Baltimore & the Franklin Fire Co. of Washington, this print is respectfully dedicated, (as a slight token of appreciation of their generous hospitality) by the United States Hose Co. of Philadelphia.” Although the artist of this work is unknown, it is possibly the work of James Fuller Queen (circa 1820–86), a Philadelphia lithographer and pioneer chromolithographer known for his attention to detail.  Queen was a volunteer firefighter who made prints of other fire companies.

Stand Pipe for West Philadelphia Water Works

This lithograph from circa 1853 shows the proposed design for a standpipe with an ornate spiral staircase, topped by a statue of George Washington. The standpipe was to be erected at Thirty-Fifth and Sycamore streets as part of the Twenty-Fourth Ward Water Works (i.e., West Philadelphia Water Works). On the ground, individuals are shown gazing up at the structure from its base. Other men and women ascend the staircase and view the vista from the observation deck of the standpipe. Completed circa 1855 (without the statue) after the designs of engineers Birkinbine & Trotter, the standpipe served as a reservoir for the waterworks located on the west bank of the Schuylkill River, north of the Fairmount Dam. It was removed in 1870. A note on recto of this print notes a height of 130 feet and a diameter of five inches, and states it should be “made of B[illegible] iron.” The maker of the print is listed as the firm of Rease & Schell, a partnership formed in the 1850s by William H. Rease and Francis H. Schell. Born in Pennsylvania circa 1818, Rease was a prominent mid-19th century Philadelphia trade card lithographer. He was known to highlight details of human interest in his advertisements. Schell was born in Philadelphia in 1834 and is best known for his work during the Civil War as an illustrator for Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper. The printer was Thomas S. Sinclair (circa 1805–81). Sinclair 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.

William D. Parrish, Book Bindery, Paper and Rag Warehouse, Paper Books and Stationery. Number 4 North Fifth Street, Philadelphia

This advertising print from 1847 shows the busy four-story storefront of William D. Parrish, located on Fifth Street north of Market Street in Philadelphia. Signage displayed on the establishment reads, “book bindery,” “paper & rag warehouse,” and “paper, books, and stationery.” A male patron enters the store through one open entryway; at the other entryway, a clerk prepares sacks on a hoist. Shelves of bound items line a wall of the store. In the central display window are glass bottles and stacks of bound volumes. Employees of the store are visible at work in the upper floor windows, readying hoisting ropes, inspecting rags, and working with and carrying stacks of bound books. The windows without employees contain boxes. Outside the storefront, additional signage on the building facade advertise “Book Bindry [sic] Upstairs”; “Rags Bought for Cash”; and “Blank Books and School Books.” On the sidewalk, marked crates and sacks of rags are stacked near the open cellar. Crate markings include “F.C.L.,” “D.C.H. N. Orleans,” “Nashville,” and “Louisville.” A horse-drawn dray with a driver is in the street. Parrish operated the store from this location in 1844–54.

Ruins of Saint Augustine's Church. North Fourth Street, Philadelphia

This lithograph from 1844 shows the ruins of Saint Augustine’s Church, located at 260-262 North Fourth Street in Philadelphia. In May 1844, this Catholic church was destroyed by fire during the Nativist Riots. Seen here are the damaged outer church walls, which remain standing behind a stone and iron work fence. On the sidewalk, pedestrians, including a pair of men, a pair of women, and a couple, walk past, point, and discuss the ruins. Another woman faces away from the destroyed church, and, near the pair of men, a dog wanders. The church congregation was formed in 1796 under Matthew J. Carr and served the large German and Irish immigrant community residing in the northern sections of the city. The church was built in 1801 after the designs of architect Douglas Fitzmaurice Fagan. The May riots (May 6–8, 1844) began during a confrontation between Irish Catholics and participants in an American Nativist Party rally that was held in the Irish neighborhood of Kensington. Text below the image states that the church was “destroyed by a mob on the evening of the 8th of May, 1844.”

Frederick Fisher, Upholstery, Cheap Bedding and Feather Warehouse. Number 31

This lithograph from 1846 is an advertising proof for an upholstery business operated by Frederick Fisher at the northeast corner of Eighth and Zane streets in Philadelphia. Shown here is the two-and-one-half story warehouse; it has numerous windows and is adorned with signage. Patrons are seen entering through one doorway, passing a sign advertising, "Beds Hair Mattresses Cushions Feathers Moss Ticking Cotts [sic] Cattail." Bedding and bed posts are visible in or hanging out of most of the warehouse windows. A stuffed swan standing among pillows is visible in one of the lower windows. Bed posts and bags labeled "Feathers" lean against the building. Mattresses and bed cushions are displayed on racks on the sidewalk. The scene also includes a fire hydrant and a boy walking past the warehouse. Fisher operated an upholstery business between 1839 and 1853; he operated from this location at the corner of Eighth and Zane streets in 1844–48.