|LARGE SCALE SOUVENIR STEVENSGRAPH, MADE FOR THE 1876 CENTENNIAL INTERNATIONAL EXPOSITION IN PHILADELPHIA, TO CELEBRATE 100 YEARS OF AMERICAN INDEPENDENCE:
|Frame Size (H x L):||15.25" x 11.25"|
|Flag Size (H x L):||10" x 6"|
|This souvenir Stevensgraph (woven silk picture) was made for the 1876 Centennial International Exposition in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, a World’s Fair event, held in conjunction with our nation’s 100-year anniversary of independence. While most Stevensgraphs are the size of an average bookmark, this especially large format is especially unusual. Just above the center is a wreath of olive branches and a letter “W” under a portrait of George Washington. This is flanked by two 13-star flags with a billowing, stylized, elongated design that ends in a “V”-shaped swallowtail, tipped with tassels. Their 4-4-5 star pattern is very unusual. Above Washington’s image is a spread-winged eagle and the words “Philadelphia International Exposition”. The Fairmount Park Art Gallery, a.k.a. Memorial Hall, is pictured below and is one only two Centennial Expo buildings that still exist today on the original site (plus two small brick outbuildings). While immense in size and very extravagant, almost all of the 200-plus structures erected for the event were only temporary. Some were as large as 21 square acres.
Below the art gallery are industrial images that relate to Pennsylvania. A ship, wheat sheaf and plow are part of Pennsylvania’s state seal (though in different format). There are also images of a steam engine, a manufacturing plant of some sort, plus commodities such as petroleum, tea, and cotton bails to represent Philadelphia’s textile industry. Below is a banner that celebrates the Expo and a signature that denotes that the textile is a souvenir made by J. B. Champromy, who was evidently the designer, and A. Larcher, the printer.
The technology to make Stevensgraphs 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.
It is interesting to note that other examples of this particular Stevensgraph are known to exist with slightly different bindings, some of which have silk fringe.
Mounting: The flag was mounted and framed within our own conservation department, which is led by expert staff. We take great care in the mounting and preservation of flags and have framed thousands of examples.
The background is 100% cotton twill, black in color. The gilded molding has a traditional early American profile and dates to the 1920's. To this a rippled profile molding, black with gold highlights, was added as a cap. Spacers keep the textile away from the glass, which is U.V. protective.
Condition: There is minor foxing and staining and minor fading.
|Collector Level:||Intermediate-Level Collectors and Special Gifts|
|Earliest Date of Origin:||1876|
|Latest Date of Origin:||1876|
|Price:||Please call (717) 676-0545 or (717) 502-1281|