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  STEVENSGRAPH BOOK MARK, WITH A PORTRAIT OF GEORGE WASHINGTON, MADE FOR THE 1876 CENTENNIAL INTERNATIONAL EXPOSITION IN PHILADELPHIA BY THOMAS STEVENS, WHO INVENTED THE PROCESS FOR PRODUCING THEM

Available: Sold
Frame Size (H x L): 15" x 7.5"
Flag Size (H x L): 9.5" x 2.25"
Description....:
Stevensgraph (woven silk picture), in the form of a book mark, made as a souvenir for the 1876 Centennial International Exposition, held to celebrate the 100-year anniversary of American independence. The technology to weave these highly detailed silk textiles was developed by Thomas Stevens, a weaver in Coventry, England, who adapted a Jacquard loom to weave colorful pictures from silk. By 1862 he was producing four different designs and by the late 1880's he had approximately 900. Many were bookmarks, but there were greeting cards, postcards, and other formats.

While the vast majority of Stevensgraphs with patriotic American themes were produced in New Jersey, this one was made by Stevens' own company. "T. Stevens. Coventry." appears on the reverse.

The form is straight with a triangular wedge at the bottom and the finely executed text and imagery typical of the art form. There is a prairie point border along the top, under which are the dates “1776 1876” underneath the word “Centennial,” with “U.S.A.” beneath. These appear in red, green, and violet on a field covered with yellow scrollwork. Below this is a bust portrait of George Washington, resting between crossed flags with a crown of laurel or olive branches at their apex, captioned above by the title "The Father of Our Country" in an arched format. Below Washington’s name are the words from Lighthorse Henry Lee’s eulogy, “First in Peace, First in War, First in the Hearts of His Countrymen.” At the bottom, below an illustration of one of the more than 200 buildings erected for the Centennial Expo., is a spread-winged eagle perched atop a federal shield with 13 stars, flanked by a 13 star flag and 5 other international flags.

Mounting: The gilded American molding dates between 1840 and 1860. To this a modern, rippled profile molding, black with gold highlights, was added as a cap. The textile has been hand-stitched to 100% cotton, black in color, which was washed to reduce excess dye. The black fabric has been washed to reduce excess dye. An acid-free agent was added to the wash to further set the dye and the fabric was heat-treated for the same purpose. Spacers keep the textile away from the glazing, which is U.V. protective glass.

Condition: Excellent.
Collector Level: Beginners and Holiday Gift Giving
Flag Type:
Star Count:
Earliest Date of Origin: 1876
Latest Date of Origin: 1876
State/Affiliation: Pennsylvania
War Association:
Price: SOLD
E-mail: Inquire
 

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