Newly Acquired Items
Art & Illustrations
Currier & Ives lithograph LOADING COTTON and Painting By Brian Coole derived from the same steamboat ECLIPSE
Sidewheel Mississippi River Steamboat Eclipse Painting By Brian Coole
eBay item number:
$4,250.00 or best offer
Rare Subject Matter of Artist
COOLE, Brian, (English artist) Sidewheel steamboat ECLIPSE on the Mississippi River
Oil/Wood Panel, signed lower right, 11.78" x 30", framed 17.5" x 35.5".
Born in Edgeware, Middlesex, England, February 14th 1939. Irish parentage, strongest affiliation USA. Still living.
Entirely self-taught. Visits to public museums and galleries give his claimed influences of William Wyllie through a spectrum ranging from Rembrandt to Canaletto, although in the US, his work is compared to that of Fitz Hugh Lane.
Watercolor by John Pike of Lock 44 on the Ohio River entitled EVENING SKY. From an approximately 11 x 15 inch print.
John Pike was a Bostonian by birth and an artist, world traveler, lecturer, teacher, author, musician, and inventor by choice.
Having studied under the careful tutelage of two famous artists at the Provincetown artist's colony, Charles Hawthorne and Richard Miller, John Pike's illustrious career began at the age of sixteen when he gave his first one man show.
By the time of his death, over sixty one man shows had been credited to his career.
John's world travels began at the age of twenty when he journeyed to Jamaica seeking adventure. There, he was commissioned to create advertisements for the Jamaican rum industry as well as design various stores, nightclubs, and the famed Carib Theatre for MGM in Kingston, Jamaica.
As an official Air Force artist, John roamed the world. Greenland, Ecuador, Colombia, France, Germany, Formosa, Korea, Japan, and Egypt have been subjects for his talented brush. These paintings are in the permanent collection of the U.S.A.F. Academy in Colorado Springs and the Pentagon in Washington D.C.
Beginning in 1966, John journeyed to all corners of the earth conducting globe-trotting workshops for artists. These "Painting Holidays" traveled to England, Belgium, France, Italy, Greece, Spain, Portugal, Morocco, Mexico, Jamaica, Ireland, Yugoslavia, Guatemala, Columbia, and New Mexico.
His works were frequently featured in Life, Readers Digest, Redbook, Cosmopolitan, and dozens of other magazines throughout the years. John has been called upon by such industrial giants as Standard Oil, Alcoa, and Equitable Life for his painting talents. He has been commissioned by globe spanning industries such as National Cash Register, General Tire, and others for a variety of artistic projects which have received national acclaim.
His award winning paintings have been exhibited with those of past greats at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, the Smithsonian National Museum, the Grand Central Art Galleries, and are represented in many important public and private collections around the world.
Some of John's awards have included the American Watercolor Society Award, the National Hallgarten Prize, Salmagundi Black and White Prizes, A.W.S. Watercolor U.S.A. Award, 1974 recipient of the National Academy Walter Briggs Memorial Award, 1976 top National Academy Watercolor Award William A. Patton Prize, A.W.S. John Young Hunter Award, The Academic Artists Association Helen Gould Kennedy Award, as well as the Franklin Mint Gold Medal Award for being one of twelve American Watercolor Society top prize winners for five years. He was also inducted into the National Academy, which is a top honor for artists in the U.S. He was invited by the National Gallery of Art and N.A.S.A. to be an official artist on the Apollo 10 Moon Shot, and was also invited to hang in the 200 Years of American Watercolor Show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.
Other than painting, John is the author of two of the best selling books on watercolor, as well as the inventor of the patented John Pike Watercolor Palette and John Pike's Perspective Machine.
John spent the summer months at his Woodstock, New York studio where he conducted an art school devoted entirely to the watercolor medium. The reputation of the school was such that many art studios, advertising agencies, and corporations sent their professional artists for advanced study.
NATCHEZ VIII (the "Eighth" steamboat by that name)
Stobart original steamboat painting
JOHN STOBART Original Oil Painting Canvas 24"x36" Signed Riverboat
"Landing on the Red River" 1977
for sale on eBay
Vintage Watercolor, "Mississippi River 1944", David Hal Morris Sr.
DETAIL OF MATTED AND FRAMED PAINTING THAT IS CURRENTLY LISTED ON ETSY (27 OCTOBER, 2019)
Vintage Watercolor, "Mississippi River 1944", David Hal Morris Sr. Framed Winter Scene With Paddlewheel Boat // Illinois Artist $90.00
Free shipping to United States
Vintage from the 1940s
This handsome framed watercolor of an old paddlewheeler aground in the Mississippi River was painted in 1944 by David Hal Morris, Sr. Morris, who signed his artworks "Hal Morris, Sr."
He is a noted painter of early steamboat river history and was featured in 'Who's Who' in the 1920's. He was a newspaper artist and graphic designer, retiring from his job at the Chicago Sun Times Newspaper at the age of 92. His wife, Eva, was also a noted artist. Hal Morris's son, David Hal Morris, Jr. was also a painter; he lived in Colorado, signing his works "David Hal Morris" (no Jr.).
The frosty scene, done in grey, taupe and white, depicts one of the many paddlewheel boats that cruised the Mississippi River, run aground and obviously abandoned, the worse for wear.
It was the kind of scene Hal Morris loved to paint and he did it so well. This painting was accompanied by a receipt showing its sale in 1993 by a Crete, Illinois, antiques shop, at that time it sold for $47.93
(We'll enclose this receipt with the painting.) Presumably it was sold unframed, which is how it came to us. The cream colored matte is pencil signed bottom right: ' __Hal Morris, Sr._ ' and titled: 'Mississippi River _ 1944_' bottom left. There is also a preliminary sketch he made on the back (see photos #6 and #7). We photographed it before we had the painting framed under glass in a 1 inch wide stepped wood frame with a speckled pale gilt finish.
We naturally retained the original signed mat and our framer installed on the back a coated hanging wire complete with hanging hardware.
The framed size is 10 inches by 12 inches, with the sight size 5 1/2 by 7 1/2 inches and weighs about 1 1/4 pounds. This artwork is in excellent condition, ready to hang and admire.
Color Etching "River Queen" by Al Mettel
"River Queen" on the Ohio River by Al Mettel
Calendar Art Talio-Chrome from Color Etching
7.70 x 10.30 inches
BROWN & BIGELOW
Saint Paul 4, MINNESOTA
Al Mettel was known for his artistic depictions of churches. His artwork was printed by the hundreds or even thousands by Brown & Bigelow (his employer) each year for promotional calendars and Christmas Season or other holiday give-aways.
He was responsible for a process which reproduced watercolor prints using an old press he modified which he had found during his years in Europe. He passed on in 1957.
STEAMBOAT NATCHEZ AT NIGHT ON THE MISSISSIPPI AT NEW ORLEANS - IMPRESSIONIST WATERCOLOR
CURRENTLY LISTED ON ETSY . . . THE STEAMBOAT NATCHEZ AT NIGHT ON THE MISSISSIPPI AT NEW ORLEANS IMPRESSIONISTIC WATERCOLOR TECHNIQUE WITH RED INTENSIFIED BY MIXING BEET ROOT WITH WATERCOLOR PAINT
5 out of 5 stars
Free shipping to United States
watercolor, beet root, pastel, acrylic wash, paper
Height: 24 Inches; Width: 20 Inches
Riverside was painted on water color press paper and is aprox 24 x 20 inches the red was created by mixing watercolor and beet root to create a longer lasting brighter red. This is the first painting I have used beet root on. Ships in a tube, ready to frame.
New Orleans Levee 1885 painted by William Aiken Walker
J.M. WHITE interior decor 1878 - 1886
Got this 8 x 10 print of the J.M. WHITE's cabin from an archive in Paris via eBay. I thought it might have originated from the Gandy Collection at LSU Special Collections but I couldn't locate it there.
After scanning it at a larger file I did considerable "spotting" of minor blemishes and reduced it a bit for export here. The sign over the purser's office needed the most restoration to complete the lettering. It was surprising that there were enough elements in the sign to finish the broken letters:
TAKEN FOR COLLECTION
NOT C. O. D.
The extravagance of the interior decor was incredible, must have been at least comparable or even more ambitious than the homes of moguls on shore in ye olden days.
The J.M. WHITE, a side-wheel packet with wood hull (312.7 ft. x 47.9 ft. x 11.5 ft.), was built at Howard in 1878. Owned by Greenville & New Orleans Packet Co., the J.M. WHITE operated on the lower Mississippi River.
The 276th boat built at Howard, J.M. WHITE was the ultimate "floating palace" and the shipyard's crowning achievement. Its large main cabin (233 ft. x 19 ft. x 13ft.) was lined with rosewood and walnut burl inlaid panels and lit by seven sixteen-burner gold gilt chandeliers.
She burned at St. Maurice Plantation, Louisiana on December 13, 1886.
Painting by Gordon Grant of the Civil War naval vessel MONITOR and a Mississippi Steamboat Painting of the Civil War naval vessel MONITOR and a Mississippi Steamboat by Gordon Grant large format illustrations on un-numbered pages are 10.25 x 12.80 inches
From an juvenile illustrated MARITIME PICTORIAL BOOK
"THE STORY OF THE SHIP"
BY McGLOUGHLIN BROS. INC.
Dave circa 1996 by Jon Terada
In 1996 while working on the animated feature film CATS DON'T DANCE in Hollywood, production manager Jon Terada took some photos of yours truly, two of which I have composited here with one of my favorite photo of one of the Heckmann boats on the Missouri River.
Cameo Kirby 1923 silent film
Cameo Kirby was originally a 1909 Broadway play written by Booth Tarkington and Harry Leon Wilson.
Adapted 3 times into motion pictures:
Cameo Kirby (1914 film), a 1914 silent American film
Cameo Kirby (1923 film), a 1923 silent American film
Cameo Kirby (1930 film), a talkie by Fox Film Corporation
Cameo Kirby 1923 version
Director John Ford
Producer William Fox
Screenplay Robert N. Lee
From Cameo Kirby a play by Booth Tarkington and Harry Leon Wilson
Production & Distribution
Fox Film Corporation
Released October 21, 1923
Cameo Kirby was a 1923 American silent drama film directed by John Ford which starred John Gilbert and Gertrude Olmstead and featured Jean Arthur in her onscreen debut.
It was Ford's first film credited as John Ford instead of Jack Ford. It was based on a play by Booth Tarkington and Harry Leon Wilson. The story had been filmed as a silent before in 1914 with Dustin Farnum, who had originated the role on Broadway in 1909. The film was remade as a talking musical film in 1930.
Wrongfully blamed for the death of Col. John Randall, riverboat gambler Cameo Kirby (Gilbert) must find the true villain and clear his name before he can declare his love for Adele (Olmstead), the dead man's daughter. Prints of the film exist in the UCLA Film and Television Archive and at the Cinemateca Portuguesa (Portuguese Film Archive), in Lisbon.
John Gilbert as Cameo Kirby
Gertrude Olmstead as Adele Randall
Alan Hale as Colonel Moreau
Eric Mayne as Colonel Randall
W. E. Lawrence as Tom Randall (as William E. Lawrence)
Richard Tucker as Cousin Aaron Randall
Phillips Smalley as Judge Playdell
Jack McDonald as Larkin Bunce
Jean Arthur as Ann Playdell
Eugenie Forde as Madame Davezac
Frank Baker (uncredited)
Ken Maynard (uncredited)
George Reed as Croup (uncredited)
Ynez Seabury (uncredited)
A novel about Huck's Pap: FINN by Jon Clinch
Roberta Hagood who passed on a few years ago at 103 years of age, was born and raised in Northeast Missouri and lived in small towns in the Salt River country and spent many years with her husband Hurley after they retired from West Coast jobs back in Hannibal which was where their siblings were. The Hagoods wrote a series of local history books about Hannibal that I designed dust jackets for.
Roberta had a kind of horror of the Mississippi River, due to an often unpleasant odor of decay that it gives off which can be strongest along the shore and sickens some sensitive people. Jon Clinch's 2007 novel about Huck Finn's "Pap" entitled FINN dwells on the shabby, unsavory and impoverished "river rats" who fished, trapped and stole to eek out their modest living from the river.
Huck Finn's Tormented Father
(David A. Johnson)
Sunday, February 18, 2007
By Jon Clinch
287 pp. $23.95
Jon Clinch's haunting first novel not only finds Pap, but in the life of this violent alcoholic it finds the spirit of a nation torn apart by conflicting racial passions. Clinch, who runs an advertising agency in Philadelphia, relies on Twain's details, sometimes borrowing whole scenes and patches of dialogue, but he reorders the characters completely, setting that eager little boy and his unconscious irony far into the background and forcing us to concentrate instead on the anguished man who sired him. Admittedly, part of the dark thrill here is "finding out" the back story that fans of Huckleberry Finn have long wondered about -- Who would ever have had a child with Pap? How did he end up naked and dead on that floating house? -- but this isn't just a creative appendix to an American classic. Clinch reimagines Finn in a strikingly original way, replacing Huck's voice with his own magisterial vision -- one that's nothing short of revelatory.
The novel begins, as such a story must, on the Mississippi River, that incalculably powerful current that's both cradle and grave, giving life across 2,000 miles while carrying away the nation's detritus and death:
"Under a low sun, pursued by fish and mounted by crows and veiled in a loud to such a sad destination as this."
Clinch never absolves him, but Finn comes from a family that would send anybody to the bottle. His mother is a bitter, dissatisfied woman. His father, known to everyone as the Judge, is an unyielding, loveless man who projects an enervating aura of disapproval. Disgusted with Finn's lack of interest in academics, the Judge consigns his son to a shack behind the barn, and there he might have spent the rest of his life, contentedly fishing and hunting and catching odd jobs, had he not come into possession of a young slave named Mary.
This impossibly complicated relationship is the heart of the novel and a testament to Clinch's sensitivity, his willingness to trace the threads of passion no matter where they lead. Naturally, Finn thinks of Mary as his property; he keeps her locked in his shack and orders her to cook and clean for him and eventually sleep with him. But he also appreciates her on a higher level that has no sanction in this racist society.
Finn senses that "there is about her a grace and an ineffable sadness that conspire to retard her movements and make them thereby into something almost musical, transforming every act into a kind of prayer or languorous meditation."
They fall into the habits of an old married couple. Despite "his shameful devotion," "his own untoward preferences in women," Finn eventually defends her with his life -- and even kills for her. "He is faithful to her," Clinch writes, "as to nothing else in this world," and she cares for him in return, without ever losing sight of the precarious nature of her position. When baby Huck comes along, the three of them, though desperately poor and completely outcast, seem genuinely content.
But try as he might, Finn is too weak, too proud and finally too racist to preserve what he later recalls as "the old paradisiacal days in his cabin." And that's the real curse that Clinch describes so powerfully: Finn is fully aware of what he's lost.
"He is tormented to distraction by a kind of desperate unholy vigor," Clinch writes, "by the inescapable conviction that he has abandoned something that he must now restore unto himself."
It's a poignant echo of Huck's description of his father in Huckleberry Finn:
"A body would a thought he was Adam -- he was just all mud."
And what, Clinch asks with unblinking honesty and sympathy, is an angry, remorseful man of mud to do with himself?
In one of the novel's most frightening, incantatory scenes, a grotesque allusion to Tom Sawyer, Finn madly whitewashes the entire interior of his shack -- the walls, the floor, the windows, everything -- desperate to be white, to be clean, to be pure, to cover the blood. But no sooner has it dried than he's drawing on those walls with the grime of his own fingers, creating a vast canvas "of his urge and of his longing and of his despair over the fate of his poor doomed immortal soul."
Here, trapped in a squatter's shack hanging precariously over the river, is the madness of a whole country that will soon tear itself apart in a war over race.
Twain had a grim side, too, of course, but throughout much of his career, he was constrained by writing for the young boys' market. While working on Huckleberry Finn, he wrote in his journal,
"I can't say, 'They cut his head off, or stabbed him, etc. - describe the blood & the agony in his face."
A decade later, already troubled by the depression that would eventually overtake him, he told a friend that he couldn't write all the things he wanted to:
"They would require . . . a pen warmed up in hell."
I don't know where Jon Clinch has been, but with Finn, he's grabbed hold of that searing pen.
Ron Charles is a senior editor of Book World.
© 2007 The Washington Post Company
Confederate Prisoners and the Aleck Scott, February 1862
Illustrated London New 21 May 1862
Civil War in America - Steamboats at Cairo, Illinois
"THE WAR IN AMERICA: GENERAL POPE'S DIVISION AT THE LEVEE, CAIRO (THE ILLINOIS TOWN ON THE MISSISSIPPI AT THE MOUTH OF THE OHIO RIVER) ON ITS WAY FROM NEW MADRID TO REINFORCE GENERAL HALLECK, NEAR CORINTH."
The names of three of the boats are legible although two of the names were misspelled. The NEW UNCLE SAM is O.K. The "YAN KEY" should have been spelled "YANKEE" and the "ALICK SCOTT" should have been spelled "ALECK SCOTT" which was the steamboat that young Sam Clemens was on board "learning the river" as a cub pilot under Horace Bixby from December 1858 to April 1859.
The online article below quotes a letter written by a Union soldier's wife to her husband in February, 1862 describing Confederate prisoners on board the ALECK SCOTT who were guarded by Union soldiers on the Mississippi at Liberty, Illinois.
From "Raiders of the Lost Archives":
Behind the stacks at the Special Collections Research Center
Southern Illinois University
Posted by: Aaron Lisec | March 6, 2012
Confederate Prisoners and the Aleck Scott, February 1862
Nancy Clendenin Mann (1829-1912) lived in Liberty (now Rockwood), Illinois, a small town on the Mississippi River about ten miles below Chester. During the Civil War her husband John served in the Fifth Illinois Cavalry. Nancy kept house and raised their four daughters. Her letters to John kept him informed about town news, the girls' activities and health, the price and availability of local commodities, and news of friends and relatives in other regiments.
Looking out on the busy Mississippi, Nancy sometimes witnessed scenes that brought the war to her doorstep. On February 20, 1862, she watched as five boatloads of Confederate prisoners, captured at the surrender of Fort Donelson on February 16, passed Liberty on their way to prison camps at Camp Butler in Springfield or Camp Douglas in Chicago. Nancy wrote a breathless description for her husband, who had barely finished training camp and seen nothing yet of the war.
"My eyes are so tired with looking through the spy glass at rebel prisoners that I can scarcely see to write. The steamboat Alex. Scott is laying at Hamilton's wood yard, laden with prisoners taken at Fort Donelson. Emily, Nannie and I, have been looking through the glass at them. They are clad in dirty looking garments of various colors. They have no uniformity of dress, they do not have overcoats but wear a blanket with a hole in the center through which they put the head. This gives them a very slovenly appearance. The blankets are some red, some striped, some white, the dirtiest things you ever saw. The men walk, or sit, around on the boat. They do not make a very lively appearance. Our men who are guarding them on the boat step round with their heads up and try keep themselves warm. You will never know what a contrast there is between the Union loving men and the rebels until you see them together, . . ."
(Mann Family Papers; punctuation and capitalization corrected)
Launched in 1848, the steamboat ALECK SCOTT plied the Mississippi for more than a decade. Samuel L. Clemens served as cub pilot on the boat from December 1858 to April 1859, making five trips between St. Louis and New Orleans. After the fifth trip Clemens acquired his pilot's license, having worked two years on the river. The dates and boats he served are chronicled here by the Mark Twain Project at the University of California at Berkeley.
Pressed into Union Army service as a quartermaster ship in 1861, the ALECK SCOTT was renamed FORT HENRY after February 1862. In September 1862 the ship was converted to an ironclad, renamed LAFAYETTE and transferred to the Navy.
Harper's Weekly 3 May 1862 engraved illustration
Steamers sunk by Rebels between Island Number 10 and New Madrid, Missouri
Harper's Weekly Oct 1861 steamers EMMA DUNCAN and N.W. THOMAS
Harper's Weekly October 26, 1861 page 684 sketches by J.C. Beard and Bill Travis were the basis for a page full of engravings captioned THE WAR IN KENTUCKY - IN & ABOUT PADUCAH. This attachment above is from page 684 of the top panel with larger details from the left and right halves of the top panel included below that in this composite for a closer look at the boats.
Represented on the far right were the EMMA DUNCAN and the N.W. THOMAS. In the lower left and lower is inscribed FREMONT's FLEET of 13 STEAMERS AND 125 BARGES OFF NEW ALBANY (Indiana) AT THE FALLS OF THE OHIO. The sidewheeler EMMA DUNCAN was built in 1860 at Pittsburgh, named for the daughter of a Cincinnati furniture manufacturer and constructed on a wooden hull measuring 180 feet in length by 34 feet in width, for the total cost of $27,000.
Three boilers supplied steam to engines having 24-inch cylinders with a 6-foot stroke. The sidewheels were 28 feet in diameter with bucket planks 8 feet in length.
The boat was owned by Capt. F.Y. Batchelor, who initially operated it in the Cincinnati-St. Louis trade, later changing to the Cincinnati-Pittsburgh run.
The DUNCAN transported supplies for the U.S. Army during the Civil War, under the command of Capt. Stanton Batchelor.
The vessel was reportedly under charter to the government in the fall of 1862, when it was ordered to go to Louisville and referred to in official correspondence as a gunboat.
On March 24, 1863, Rear Adm. David D. Porter, of the U.S. Navy, purchased the steamboat at Cairo, Ill., for $39,000.
The boat's name was changed to the U.S.S. HASTINGS and under that name it was ultimately abandoned in 1872.
The sidewheeler N.W. THOMAS was built at Cincinnati, Ohio in 1853—Length 190 feet—Breadth 49 feet—419 Tons
At the beginning of the Civil War in 1861 the N.W. THOMAS was conscripted by the Federal government and assigned to the U.S. Quartermasters Dep't.
"The immensity of steamboat concentration was revealed to the people of Evansville, Indian when on September 18, 1861, a fleet of thirteen steamers, with the steamer N.W. THOMAS as flagship, and 120 barges, came down to Evansville where they laid over to receive further instructions before proceeding to Cairo. A large crowd was on hand at the wharf to greet the fleet."
excerpted from "Evansville Steamboats During the Civil War" by Milford M. Miller
Indiana Magazine of History, 1941
Volume 37, Issue 4
The entire article can be found here: scholarworks.iu.edu
STERN PADDLE WHEEL PROPULSION MECHANISM FOR BOATS
Drawing etc. submitted with application for a patent:
STERN PADDLE WHEEL PROPULSION MECHANISM FOR BOATS
PATENT ORIGINALLY FILED DEC. 26, 1931
APRIL 25 1933 PATENT GRANTED
RAMON ENSENAT & EVERETT ROOK ATTORNEYS
Arrangements on vessels of propulsion elements directly acting on water of paddle wheels, e.g. of stern wheels
Inventor Edwin J.C. Joerg
Application number: US583169A
Filing date: 1931-12-26
Application filed by Edwin J.C. Joerg
Priority to US583169A
Carl Barks artwork of a Disney-style cartoon Riverboat Gambler "Duck" 1979
Here is a wonderful 1979 Carl Barks pen & ink with watercolor painting on illustration board of a melodramatic mustachioed Riverboat Gambler Duck "villain," who is just bristling with Aces while he reaches for his derringer on a Mississippi River dock next to his carpetbag and jug of "corn likker" as an inquisitive little black mouse looks him over while in the distance a sidewheel steamboat paddles along.
Carl Barks (March 27, 1901 - August 25, 2000) was an American cartoonist, author, and painter. He is best known for his work in Disney comic books, as the writer and artist of the first Donald Duck stories and as the creator of Scrooge McDuck. He worked anonymously until late in his career; fans dubbed him "The Duck Man" and "The Good Duck Artist." In 1987, Barks was one of the three inaugural inductees of the Will Eisner Comic Book Hall of Fame.
Two paintings by Benton Clark : Poster RACE OF Rob't E. LEE vs. Natchez and MISSOURI cover for BLUE BOOK 1949
From an 18 x 24 inch printer's proof of a 1943 painting by illustrator Benton Clark of the 1870 Race of the ROB'T E. LEE and the NATCHEZ. On board the flatboat at night in the foreground are diverse folks, several holding torches. Two African Americans lower left, a boatman at the oar at center. In the foreground are fashionably dressed plantation owners and their wives watching the race with great interest. Dude in foreground raising his hat and shouting enthusiastically. This may have been painted for a magazine illustration or as calendar art.
SECOND: Wrap around cover (front and back from BLUE BOOK Nov 49)
MISSOURI The Show-Me State
Painted by Benton Clark
These United States . . .
XXXV (35th in the cover series)
"Magazine for Adventurous Reading"
Two great rivers and their important role in American history put the Missouri Territory on the map early as the gateway through which migration passed westward; and they have largely contributed to the economic stability of the "Show Me State."
Between 1673 and 1723 French explorers proceeding up the Mississippi traversed the territory extensively. By 1804, when the territory of Louisiana was transferred to the United States following the Louisiana Purchase, the area, including the present State of Missouri, was well known. Lead and salt mines had been discovered.
Trade with Santa Fe from western Missouri had been attempted in defiance of Spanish authorities. In 1812, the year in which the Territory of Missouri was established, twelve St. Louisians were arrested and imprisoned for nine years for their commercial invasion of Spanish domain. However, after Mexico overthrew Spanish rule, a welcome was extended to American traders, and the Santa Fe trail became a thriving artery of trade. Its eastern terminal—first at Franklin, then at Independence, then at the present site of Kansas City, all on the Missouri River—was a clearinghouse for eastern and southern trade with the southwest. From the West, into Missouri, poured much-needed silver, and along with it, the dependable Missouri mule.
Missouri's position between the slave-holding States to the south and the free States to the north was the cause of bitter controversy in Congress when the territory petitioned for statehood in 1820. Finally, after two historic compromises, the State, with its present boundaries, was admitted to the Union in 1821.
Controversy continued to play a part in Missouri history. The Mormons, who settled in the State in 1831, were expelled eight years later. Immediately preceding the Civil War border wars with Kansas broke out. As a border State Missouri was the scene of eleven per cent of the combats of the Civil War, though few were major engagements.
Famous sons include Mark Twain, whose immortal characters Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn have made famous the area around his hometown, Hannibal. Near Excelsior Springs the farm once owned by the bandit Jesse James is pointed out to visitors. Today's most famous Missourian is President Harry S. Truman, a native of Independence.
Industry and agriculture combine to make Missouri an economically sound State. Her sons can say "Show Me" with assurance. No one can show them much that Missouri does not already have.
Benton Clark 1895 - 1964 became an eastern illustrator of the West in the dramatic tradition of Frederic Remington, and especially loved painting horses.
He also did murals in Chicago and Columbus, Ohio. Growing up in Coshocton, Ohio, he lived in a picturesque rural setting of woods and valleys near the old Ohio Canal. A group of artists were working there, and one of them, Arthur Woelfle, gave Clark his first lessons and encouraged him to seek further training.
Later, Woelfle said that of all his students, Clark was the most talented. In 1913, Clark went to New York City to study at the National Academy of Design, and then in 1915 to Chicago to study at the Art Institute.
He sold magazine cover and calendar illustrations, and in 1925, began illustration work for Liberty and Outer's Recreation magazines.
He also illustrated for The Saturday Evening Post, and had a period of working for MGM Studio's art department in Culver City, California.
Clark's major influences were Harvey Dunn, Frank Hoffman, and Frederic Remington, and in 1932 he became a member of the Society of Illustrators.
That year, he returned to New York City and did western illustrations for leading magazines such as The Saturday Evening Post, McCall's and Good Housekeeping.
Confidence Man Cover Painting NORTON critical edition
Great painted illustration by artist Robert Shore (1924 - 2014) for the cover of the Norton Critical Edition ofThe Confidence Man: His Masquerade by Herman Melville
Edited by Hershel Parker and Mark Niemeyer
Published by W. W. Norton, New York 2002
Shore's stylized characters on the steamboat FIDELE are a "motley crew" of unique types that including diverse nationalities and faiths. A fellow who looks like W.C. Fields stands between an Indian with a war bonnet and a frontiersman with a coon skin hat. There are a couple of suspicious looking gents who look like they could be conspiring to swindle gullible passengers.
With the exception of images credited to public institutions,
everything on this page is from a private collection.
Please contact Steamboats.com for permission for commercial use.*