Donald Trump, The Magazine of Poetry

trump1Donald Trump, The Magazine of Poetry (Upper Montclair, NJ: Henry Wessells, Temporary Culture, 2016). Edition: 126. Graphic Arts Collection GA2016- in process. Gift of John Bidwell.

trump4Temporary Culture is the imprint of Henry Wessells, Princeton University Class of 1983. He was inspired to create Donald Trump The Magazine of Poetry by Tom Disch’s Ronald Reagan The Magazine of Poetry (London: John Sladek and Pamela Zoline, 1968). Rare Books RECAP-91154631.

Wessells tells us that it took fifty burning marshmallows, thinking about how to illustrate the piece on page 1, before he got the front cover. Temporary Culture has an instagram page where there are a couple of clips of readings from the launch on the web. Temporary Culture also produces the Endless Bookshelf




trumpOn the left Brendan Byrn and on the right, Henry Wessells at the book launch.

Students of American History: Can you identify these prominent Americans?

brinckerhoff4number 1
brinckerhoff3number 1 and 2
brinckerhoff2The Graphic Arts Collection recently acquired an album of twenty rare American Antebellum portraits. Only a handful of the sitters have been identified, such as Samuel Houston, the Texas politician. Can you recognize the others? Please post your replies below or send them to

These photographs were taken in the very early days of photography on paper, in the New York City studio of Johannes De Witt Brinckerhoff (1812-1889) at 505 Broadway (present day Soho). The sitters either lived in New York or traveled there in the late 1850s or early 1860s to have their portraits made specifically by Brinckerhoff. They had the time and money to do so, so these would have been prominent figures in social and business circles.

Although the purpose of this album is uncertain, extra prints of these sitters may have been kept for a sample book to promote the photographer. According to William Welling’s Photography in America (SAPH TR23 .W44 1987) Brinckerhoff “was among the first to exhibit along with his daguerreotypes, proofs of photographs on paper made from collodion negatives, which led to his being employed in giving instructions to many daguerreotypists, who were flocking to [New York City] for the purpose of acquiring a knowledge of the new art.”

brinckerhoff12number 3 and 4

brinckerhoffNew York Tribune January 4, 1889

Johannes De Witt Brinckerhoff was born in Bloomfield, New Jersey on April 15, 1812 to Jacob Brinckerhoff and Mary G Smith. He married Caroline Augusta Saville and had one son, James Saville Brinckerhoff. Johannes passed away on January 2, 1889 in New York City.
brinckerhoff11number 5 and 6
brinckerhoff20number 7
brinckerhoff19number 8
brinckerhoff18number 9 and 10

brinckerhoff6number 4
brinckerhoff17number 11 and 12
brinckerhoff13number 19
brinckerhoff16number 13 and 14
brinckerhoff15number 15 and 16
brinckerhoff10number 2
brinckerhoff9number 17 and 18
brinckerhoff8number 18
brinckerhoff5number 19 and 20
brinckerhoff1Johannes De Witt Brinckerhoff (1812-1889), Brinckerhoff’s Heliographic Likenesses, Developed in Colors from Nature, at the St. Nicholas Gallery… New York [title from label on front pastedown] ([New York City: Brinckerhoff, ca. 1856]). 20 mounted salted paper prints. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2016- in process

Comparing Rome and Venice



Thursday and Friday, we welcomed the students of ART 233/ARC 233 Renaissance Art and Architecture with Carolina Mangone. Although the class focuses on the renaissance, we pulled Giambattista Nolli’s 1748 plan of Rome (176 x 208 cm) to compare with a facsimile copy of Jacopo de’ Barbari’s 1500  map of Venice. Three extra tables had to be brought in to accommodate the two.

The class description reads “What was the Renaissance? This class explores the major artistic currents that swept northern and southern Europe from the fourteenth through the sixteenth centuries in an attempt to answer that question. In addition to considering key themes such as the revival of antiquity, imitation and license, religious devotion, artistic style, and the art market, we will survey significant works by artists and architects including Donatello, Raphael, Leonardo, Jan van Eyck, Dürer, and Michelangelo. Precepts will focus on direct study of original objects, with visits to Princeton’s collections of paintings, sculpture, prints, drawings, books and maps.”




nolli27The border of Nolli’s plan consists of decorative elements interspersed with the symbols of the 14 Rioni (the districts of Rome). Here is the 8th Rioni: Sant’Eustachio, named after the eponymous church located in Municipio I of the city. Its logo is the head of a stag with a cross between the antlers (although Nolli has changed that slightly here).



Preserving the Fall of Babylon

fall-of-babylonAt something over seven feet long, this nineteenth-century circus poster is too big to fit in any of our flat files. Note how it falls over the side of our largest unit.

For years, this beautiful print had been folded and crushed into small drawers along with several hundred other circus posters and broadsides. Today, it came back from our conservation lab cleaned, flattened, and rehoused.

fall-of-babylon8Thanks to Ted Stanley, Special Collections Paper Conservator in our Preservation Office, we are nearing the end of an almost year-long project to repair and restore the fragile posters and broadsides in our Barnum and Bailey Circus collection.


fall-of-babylon6The artist of this work is not well known today. A resident of Ohio for his entire life, John Rettig (1855-1932) is known for his murals in the Cincinnati Masonic Temple, for the set decoration he painted in Ohio theaters, and for his poster designs. In 1886, Rettig was commissioned to paint the panoramic scenery for a spectacle entitled The Fall of Babylon, which would take the place of the annual procession of the Order of Cincinnatus.

With seating for 8,000, the spectacle was the largest of its kind in Ohio. Each year following, a different theme was added to the pageant, including the Fall of Rome, the Fall of the Aztec Empire, and many more. According to the Biographical Dictionary of Panoramists (

The Fall of Babylon was sold and exhibited at St George Park on Staten Island, New York (today a parking lot) in 1887. For this Imre Kiralfy’s Grand Spectacular Company provided over 1,000 ballet dancers.” Kiralfy moved the performance to many other large American cities and eventually sold it to the joint firm of P.T. Barnum and J.A. Bailey.

As with other posters designed by Rettig, this one was chromolithographed and produced in large numbers. Since most were pasted to walls and billboards, few have survived. There is no date or location on the poster so that it could be used wherever the show was performed. Our collection holds over two dozen posters and streamers for The Fall of Babylon in its many variations.
fall-of-babylon5John Rettig, The Fall of Babylon. Designed and painted by John Rettig (Cincinnati: Barnum and Bailey, ca. 1895). Chromolithograph. Graphic Arts Collection

Ahí Va El Golpe (There Goes the Punch)

ah-va-issues2Ahí Va El Golpe (Mexico, 1955-1956). 20 issues: numbers 5-9,11-21,23-26. Letterpress and lithographs. Graphic Arts Collection GAX in process


Under the direction of Alberto Beltrán Garcia (1923-2002), this Mexican satirical magazine flourished for only two years. Beltrán was an active member of the Taller de Gráfica Popular (The People’s Print Workshop or TGP, see: then later, worked as deputy director for graphics for the newspaper El Día. On his own time, he drew, printed, and self-published several journals including Ahí Va El Golpe (There Goes the Punch) and El Coyote Emplumado (The Feathered Coyote).

We are fortunate to have acquired 20 rare issues of the first, ephemeral publication from the 1950s. Each issue has only four to six pages, primarily caricatures. Fellow TGP member Leopoldo Méndez contributed several illustrations.



Princeton Students: A Chance of Free CAA Registration

Registration is in full swing for the 2017 Annual College Art Association (CAA) Conference in New York City, February 15-18, 2017. What can cost up to $500 for some is being offered gratis to a few lucky students with the CAA Student Scholarships.

This, of course, includes entrance to the fabulous art book fair:

“We are always listening to what our members want and seeking out the benefits to fit your needs. That is why we have partnered up our sponsors, multinational publisher, Routledge, Taylor & Francis, and art materials specialist, Blick Art Materials, to create a student scholarship fund to assist CAA Student Members with conference costs. CAA’s Annual Conference Partner Sponsor, Routledge, Taylor & Francis will award four (4) CAA Student Members with complimentary registration and an additional $250 in scholarship money to help with conference expenses such as travel, housing, or meals. Receipts will be required for reimbursement. CAA’s Annual Conference Presenter Sponsor, Blick Art Materials will also fund conference registration fees for four (4) CAA Student Members. No travel expenses are available.”

What does this mean for you? It means register today for the 2017 Annual Conference before the Early Registration deadline for a chance to be one of the lucky 8 CAA Student Members to receive one of these scholarships. Recipients will be randomly selected by CAA and announced in mid January.

Tell your students:

Am I Not a Man and a Brother

For the 1,000th post on this weblog, we are pleased to share the acquisition of a medal bearing the abolitionist design of a kneeling slave in chains. On one side is the text: “Am I not a man and a brother,” and on the other side, “Whatsoever ye would that men should do to you. Do ye even so to them.”

Manufactured around 1790, probably in London, the medals were issued to promote the message of the Society for Effecting the Abolition of the Slave Trade. They replicate the Jasperware (unglazed porcelain) medallion produced shortly after the Society was formed in 1787 by Josiah Wedgwood’s Staffordshire pottery firm. The image, attributed to sculptor Henry Webber and prepared for production by modeler William Hackwood, quickly became the iconic symbol of the Society and appeared in books, prints, broadsides, plates, tapestries, and more.

Princeton University Art Museum holds one of the Wedgwood medallions.09b29a690eb5d24ae5828f7934c240ddSlave, 1787. Porcelain. Manufactory: Josiah Wedgwood and Sons, English, established 1759. Trumbull Prime Collection, y1937-37

The library has many examples of this iconic symbol, including an embroidered sampler:

See also: Society for the Abolition of the Slave Trade, At a meeting held for the purpose of taking the slave trade into consideration: resolved, that it is the opinion of this meeting, that the slave trade is both impolitic and unjust … ([London: s.n., 1787]). EX Lapidus 4.17 and 4.17a



A bill for your dinner in the 1780s

english-bills6Princeton’s Graphic Arts Collection holds a lovely collection of colorful printed menus from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries (, along with a substantial collection of engraved change packets from nineteenth-century British shops ( Adding to this wealth, we recently acquired a group of 20 printed and handwritten bills from inns dating 1780 to 1830.

The businesses include: Foster, Loughborough [c.1780]; Charles McDonald, Blue-Bell, Belford [1787]; Charles McDonald, Belford [1789]; Mark Tool, Chelsea [c.1790]; Charles McDonald, Belford [1794]; George Nelson, Queen’s Head, Morpeth [1801]; Robert Coupland at the York Tavern & New Inn [1803]; David Winn, George Inn, York [1806]; Willm. Carver, The New Inn Easingwold [1809]; Richard Brown, King’s Arms, Temple-Sowerby, [printed by] John Ware, printer, Whitehaven [1813]; John Barnes, Lion and Lamb Inn, Carlile [printed by] Jollie, printer, Carlisle [c.1815]; Geo.r. Tyson, George & Dragon Inn, Penrith. [1815]; J. Broadbent, White Bear Inn, Barnsely. [c.1818]; George and Dragon, Sykes, Wakefield [c.1820]; H.C. Sharpin, Ripon [1822]; S. Twaite’s, Swan Inn Ferry-Bridge [1824]; Salkeld’s, Green Dragon, Workington. [1824]; Harrison, King’s Head Inn Barnard Castle. [1824]; T. Ferguson, George Inn, Catterick-Bridge [c.1825]; Matthew Bell, Fish Inn, Penrith. [1830].



Not only are the letterhead engravings of interest as printed ephemera but these records of food, drink, and other services offered to travelers at the end of the Georgian era are of value to researchers in many disciplines.

It is curious that the bills are often pre-printed with a list of drinks and services. The waiter simply checked off what each patron ordered and added up the total. Note the food for the horses and servants is included on each bill along with tobacco and postage.

A variety of long-forgotten drinks such as “negus” (concocted from a mixture of port, hot water and spices) and bumbo (a mixture of rum, water, sugar and nutmeg) are listed on these bills. The food is rarely described more than simply “eating.”



The Writing on the Wall

“How would you like to collaborate with me on a new project?” asks Brody Neuenschwander, Princeton University Class of 1981. “The castle of Hingene, near Antwerp in Belgium, is creating a time capsule in calligraphy.”

He continues, “For a short time, all the wall hangings of the chateau will be taken down for restoration. The director of the castle, Koen De Vlieger, is taking this opportunity to ask the entire world (I’m not kidding) to send in messages that I will commit to eternity by writing them on the walls. So may I ask all of you to go to and send a message to the future? They will ask you to pay a tiny amount for the privilege. But just think, in 25 years the wall hangings will come down for their next cleaning, and you and your descendants can visit Belgium to read the fine words you composed for this wonderful time capsule.”

Neuenschwander attended Princeton University, where he was appointed University Scholar, graduating in 1981 with a paper on the techniques of medieval manuscript illumination. Over the winter of 2016/17, he will write our texts on the walls of the castle of Hingene, not to be unveiled until 2027 and then again in 2042, 2067 and 2117 (or in 25, 50 and 100 years’ time). On each occasion, during the second weekend of March, the public will be free to come and read the dreams, wishes and desires of 2017.

If you remember to bring the original invitation with you, the director promises to receive you like a Prince or a Princess.

Full Disclosure

cruikshank-burn2As he tosses books into the flames, the Prince of Wales says, “Echod this is a fine Stroke, my observations on the Family & Letters, all burned, John Bull will still be left in the Dark, & he must pay for it at last.” The Duke of Portland (seen here) replies, “And the Duchess will think me as Chaste as Joseph—So much for my Darling.”

cruikshank-burnIsaac and George Cruikshank, Burning the Memoirs, April 24, 1809. Etching with hand coloring. Graphic Arts Collection GC022 Cruikshank

Beginning in 1803, actress Mary Anne Clarke (1776-1852) became the mistress of Frederick Augustus, Prince, Duke of York and Albany (1763-1827), the second son of King George III. Although he provided a mansion and generous allowance, she wanted more.

Clarke used her influence with Frederick (who was Commander-in-Chief of the British Army) to obtain promotions for anyone who paid her price. In January 1809, the scheme was made public and by March, Frederick was forced to resign.

Isaac Cruikshank and his 16-year-old son George worked together to caricature Mary Anne and Frederick, publishing their print on April 24, 1809. Thomas Rowlandson beat them by a few days, with two caricatures: Burning the Books, on April 21, and A Piece Offering!! on April 22. The Graphic Arts Collection holds at least 32 prints on the controversy.

Clarke, seen at the far right, was paid a large sum to keep her diaries secret but in the end, could not keep quiet.

This scandalous case raised a cloud of pamphlets, some of which are very amusing, and most of them full of falsehoods; but the most curious of all was Mrs. Clarke’s own book, ‘The Rival Princes,’ in which she freely discussed the attitude towards each other of the Dukes of York and Kent, and attacked the leaders of the party who had brought on the investigation, especially Wardle, M.P. for Salisbury, and Lord Folkestone. This work was answered by two of much weaker character, The Rival Dukes, or Who is the Dupe? and The Rival Queens, or What is the Reason? by P. L. McCallum, a spy upon Mrs. Clarke, who prided himself on being the real author of the investigation. – Henry Morse Stephens for the Dictionary of National Biography

See also: A Letter to Mrs. Clarke: on her Late Connection with the Duke of York, and the charges preferred against His Royal Highness by G. L. Wardle, Esq. by a Friend to Church and State (London: Printed for and published by J. Bell …, 1809). Rare Books 14463.999 v.27

Mary Anne Clarke (1776-1852), The Rival Princes ; or, A Faithful Narrative of Facts, relating to Mrs. M.A. Clarke’s political acquaintance with Colonel Wardle, Major Dodd, &c. &c. &c., who were concerned in the charges against the Duke of York (London: printed for the author, and published by C. Chapple, 1810). Firestone 14463.361.25