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Guide to the Printmaker File
[1730]-2014, undated (bulk 1800-1860)
 PR 58

New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
New York, NY 10024
(212) 873-3400

New-York Historical Society

Collection processed by Jenny Gotwals.

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on January 31, 2020
Description is in English.

Scope and Content Note

The Printmaker File spans the period from the 1730s to the present and contains etchings, engravings, aquatints, and lithographs, mainly views of New York City and the east coast of the United States.

Historically, many items acquired by the Department of Prints, Photographs, and Architectural Collections were filed by subject or geographical location. Prints were housed in the Printmaker File if the importance of the artist or printmaker was deemed more important than the subject or place. For example, fine art prints of geographical locations were filed here instead of in the Geographic File. In many cases (i.e. Louis Prang, Bufford's Lithography) there are other prints by printmakers represented here in different collections throughout the Department. This file reflects a historical way of organizing prints, and now creates a backbone for any future filing by printmaker. Note that in 2016, the prints formerly housed in PR 229, Fine Art Prints of New York City, were merged into the Printmaker File.

"Printmaker" generally means the engraver, etcher, or lithographer of a print. In some cases it refers to the publisher of a print or to the original artist. In all cases, any other known names associated with the print (i.e. original artist, sketch designer, publisher) are given here. Lithographs found in this file are generally notable for their early dates. Lithography firms such as Bufford's Lithography and H. N. Sumner & Co. are considered the "printmaker," as is Jacques-Gerard Milbert, who did not actually draw on stone many of the views after his work found in this File.

Many prints collected here are remarkable for their age, their provenance, or their historical significance. Early views of New York City, Savannah, Georgia, and Charlestown, South Carolina can be found in the File. However, there are also a fair amount of twentieth-century prints. Points of local interest -- including various skylines of Manhattan, the Brooklyn Bridge, Central Park, the New York Stock Exchange, the Woolworth Building, and the World Trade Center -- are well-represented.

Important New York artists from throughout the twentieth century are represented in the collection. Artists with four or more prints include: Paul Berdanier, Arthur Cohen, K. Dehman, John Mackie Falconer, Agnes B. Fernbach, Albert Flanagan, Julius F. Gayler, Joseph W. Golinkin, Edward S. Hewitt, F. Leo Hunter, Nat Lowell, William Meyerowitz, Charles F.W. Mielatz, Betty Waldo Parish, Philip Reisman, Shunji Sakuyama, Anton Schutz, T.F. Simon, Emily Trueblood, William H. Wallace, Charles Henry White, Lawrence Nelson Wilbur, and Louis Wolchonok.

In addition, the collection includes small samples of the work of John Taylor Arms, Gottlob Briem, Fritz Eichenberg, Red Grooms, Richard Haas, Childe Hassam, Martin Lewis, James Pennell, Ernest D. Roth, and Richard Sloat.

Women printmakers found here include Isabel Bishop, Edith Bry, Mabel Dwight, Su-Li Hung, Yvonne Jacquette, Wuanita Smith, Caroline Phelps Stokes, and Karen Whitman, in addition to Fernbach, Parish, and Trueblood.

The collection is arranged into three series by size of print, to ensure correct handling and housing of the material: Series I. Prints 16 x 20" and smaller; Series II. Prints 16 x 20" to 30 x 40"; Series III. Prints larger than 30 x 40". Print titles are taken from inscriptions where possible. Titles given in brackets were assigned during processing.


The collection is arranged into three series by size of print. Thereunder prints are arranged alphabetically by printmaker's surname.

Missing Title

  1. Series I. Prints 16 x 20" and smaller
  2. Series II. Prints 16 x 20" to 30 x 40"
  3. Series III. Prints larger than 30 x 40"