London: Drawn & Engraved by H. Alken, 1839. Colored engraving, with gum arabic highlights, 13 1/4 x 16 1/2 inches. Repaired tear in upper left corner of the sheet, outside the neatline and not affecting the image. Very good. Matted, framed, and glazed. Item #WRCAM54836
From Alken's series "Sporting Anecdotes," specifically the story "Scenes with Uncle Sam," which appeared in the January, 1839, first number of the THE SPORTING REVIEW. The quote beneath the image describes the scene pictured in the engraving, in which a character named Judge Jobson comes upon two elk. The text of the caption is taken directly from page 28 of the story in THE SPORTING REVIEW, which is credited to a writer named "Wildrake," and reads: "On one occasion I was hunting Elk, and getting a good sight upon two fine Bucks close together, I lowered one, and starting from behind the tree which had concealed me, run forward to finish him off with my knife: but his companion, instead of making off as I expected, turned furious, and stood his ground, stamping and tearing up the earth, whilst his eyes flashed fire, and snorting so loudly, that he seemed to blow a puff-breath from his nostrils, until at last I was fairly obliged to beat a retreat, and clamber up the nearest tree to avoid his charge: once fairly up, I reloaded my rifle, and sent him off with a leaden pill in his left shoulder." The scene captures the moment at which the "furious" buck blows a "puff-breath from his nostrils" while Judge Jobson raises his arms and his rifle, presumably in the moments before he "beat a retreat." A handsome hunting scene playing on the tall- tale-infused life of David Crockett, which was a popular and often lucrative marketing strategy in the late-1830s and 1840s. John William Carleton, ed., "Scenes with Uncle Sam," from THE SPORTING REVIEW, A MONTHLY CHRONICLE OF THE TURF, THE CHASE, AND ROYAL SPORTS IN ALL THEIR VARIETIES (London: Rudolph Ackermann, 1839), pp.21-29.