This is a print depicting George Washington and his family, engraved by William Sartain. The print was published by Bradley & Co. in Philadelphia in 1865. It was produced after an oil-on-canvas by Sartain’s painting instructor, C. Schussel. The print features a pencil signature by Sartain in the bottom right margin.
The scene depicts George and Martha Washington seated at a table, with their grandchildren George Washington Parke Custis and Nelly Custis standing nearby. Washington is depicted in full uniform with his dress sword and hat on a nearby chair, which alludes to his strong military character. There is also a book held partly open in his left hand and the map of the nation’s Capital on the table in front of him, meant to signify his decision-making skills and strong character. Martha Washington is pointing with her hand to the “grand avenue,” now known as Pennsylvania Avenue. A servant is also depicted entering the room from the right.
Depictions of George Washington with his family have been popular since the 1790s, when self-taught artist Edward Savage painted an impeccable study of the family. Savage’s 1796 The Washington Family quickly became an iconic image of the first president's family, which led to the production of numerous engravings and prints. Engraved depictions were especially numerous in the years surrounding the Civil War, to serve as a reminder of the founding of the United States as one nation.
Overall good condition. Pencil signature is faint. Framed according to archival standards with a dark grey mat, conservation glass, and a custom-built distressed black and silver beaded frame.
Framed dimensions 26” H x 29 ¾” W x 2” D.
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