Coblenz, Paris & London. [ca. 1839-1842]. Handcolored engraving, 10 x 13 1/2 inches; matted and framed to 14 x 19 inches. Clean and fresh, with handsome modern color. Very good. Item #WRCAM48001
A handsome view from Staten Island, captured by Swiss artist Karl Bodmer upon his arrival in New York harbor in the Fall of 1832. The plate shows the bay speckled with the sails of small boats, guarded by Fort Lafayette, with sweeping rain clouds in the distance. In the foreground a couple stands by a small tree, taking in the view. This is plate XXXIII from Bodmer and Prince Maximilian's magnificent work on their travels through the United States.
Prince Maximilian was already an experienced naturalist and explorer in 1832, having made an important scientific expedition to Brazil in 1815-17. His preparations for his trip to North America included retaining the skilled artist, Karl Bodmer, to record illustrations of the journey. Arriving in the fall of 1832, the Prince ascended the Missouri River in the spring of 1833, going as far upstream as the American Fur Company post of Fort Mackenzie in present-day Montana, and spending the winter at Fort Clark, near the Mandan Indian villages. During this prolonged stay, he and Bodmer had ample opportunity to observe the Indian tribes of the Upper Missouri in their full glory, carefully recorded by Bodmer in watercolors. In the spring of 1834 they returned to Europe, and devoted the next five years to preparing the text and plates for this publication. ABBEY 615. GRAFF 4648. HOWES M443a, WAGNER-CAMP 76.