Category Archives: Acquisitions

new acquisitions

Last Portraits

Charles Mottram (1817-1876) after Joseph Ames (1816-1872), The Last Days of Webster at Marshfield: to the Family and Friends of the Late Daniel Webster, This Plate Representing a Scene During His Last Days at Marshfield, Is Most Respectfully Dedicated by the Publishers, 1858. Etching and engraving. Published by Smith & Parmalee, 59 Beekman Street, New York, NY.


In 2002, the Musée d’Orsay held an exhibition of Last Portraits. “The purpose of the exhibition is to evoke a practice of the past: portraying a deceased person, on their deathbed or in their coffin. This ‘last portrait’ – death mask, painting, drawing or photograph – remained in the narrow circle of relatives and friends, but, in the case of famous personalities, it could be widely circulated in public. This practice, extremely common in Western countries in the nineteenth century and until the first half of the twentieth century, is today fast disappearing, or at least it remains strictly within the boundaries of the private sphere.”

The last portrait of Daniel Webster (1782-1852), a Whig senator from Massachusetts, was not included in their show but was the subject of a recent reference question. Webster, who Sydney Smith once called “a steam-engine in trousers,” died at his home in Marshfield in 1852 after falling off his horse.

Who are the others in this scene? Joseph Alexander Ames (1816-1872); Daniel Webster (1782-1852); Charles Henry Thomas; Jacob Le Roy; Edward Curtis; Caroline Bayard Le Roy Webster (1797-1882); Mrs. James Paige; James W. Paige; George Ashmun (1804-1870); Rufus Choate (1799-1859); Peter Harvey (1810-1879); Col. Fletcher Webster, 1819-1862; Caroline L. Appleton; Daniel Webster, Jr.; Mrs. Fletcher Webster; Caroline Webster (1845-1884); J. Mason Warren; Unidentified Woman; John Taylor; Porter Wright.

“The whole household were now again in the room, calmly awaiting the moment when he would be released from pain. …It was past midnight, when, awaking from one of the slumbers that he had at intervals, he seemed not to know whether he had not already passed from his earthly existence. He made a strong effort to ascertain what the consciousness that he could still perceive actually was, and then uttered those well-known words, “I still live!” as if he had satisfied himself of the fact that he was striving to know. They were his last coherent utterance. …At twenty-three minutes before three o’clock, his breathing ceased; the features settled into a superb repose; and Dr. Jeffries, who still held the pulse, after waiting for a few seconds, gently laid down the arm, and, amid a breathless silence, pronounced the single word ‘Dead.’ –“The Death-bed of Daniel Webster,” Appletons’ Journal [Volume 3, Issue 49, Mar 5, 1870; pp. 273-275].

Princeton is fortunate to also hold a life mask [left] of Webster’s face taken in Washington D.C. by Clark Mills (1810-1883) in 1849.

“Clark Mills … developed a new technique for creating life masks that was quicker and cheaper than the existing method and as a result received many commissions for sculptures. In 1847, Mills traveled to Washington to study the statuary in the Capitol. He was selected by Congress to create an equestrian statue of President Andrew Jackson, winning the commission over the artist Hiram Powers. This piece was the first monumental equestrian statue in the country to be cast in bronze….”—Smithsonian American Art Museum

Laurence Hutton wrote “I cannot to this day understand how Clark Mills managed to make moulds from life of the entire head of Webster and of that of Calhoun, each so distinct and so near to nature, without leaving in the casts some traces of the hair they wore. Their faces were smooth shaven, but they were both far from being bald. The occiput must have been carefully and closely covered with something which left no mark; but what that something was I cannot determine. Each cast is signed by the artist and dated — Calhoun’s in 1844, Webster’s in 1849,—and that clearly enough establishes their identity. … both he and Webster—the phrenologists tell us—had unusually large heads; and we need no phrenologists to tell us that there was a good deal in them.” Laurence Hutton, Talks in a library with Laurence Hutton (G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 1905)

Some of the many other deathbed scenes include:

Junius Brutus Stearns (1810-1885), Washington on his Deathbed, 1851. Oil on canvas. Dayton Art Institute, Ohio.


Jacques Louis David (1748–1825), Death of Socrates, 1787. Oil on canvas. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Catharine Lorillard Wolfe Collection, Wolfe Fund, 1931


Pierre-Nolasque Bergeret (1782-1863), Honors Rendered to Raphael on His Deathbed, 1806. Oil on canvas. Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin, Ohio.


William L. Walton (1796-1872) after Oakley, John Calvin on his deathbed, with members of the Church in attendance, ca. 1865. Lithograph. Wellcome Trust, London.


Artist Unidentified, A Deathbed: a man breathes his last, the devil flies down and grabs his soul (in the form of a baby) from his mouth, 17th century. Engraving, inscription: “L’un de ses lieux sera ta demeure eternelle, Il faut l’un de ces deux te sauver, ou perir, Mourir comme un chrestien, ou comme un infidelle” [loosely translated One of its places will be your eternal home, One of these two must save you, or perish, Die like a Christian, or like an infidel]. Wellcome Trust, London.


Alexander Hay Ritchie (1822-1895), Death of Lincoln, ca. 1874. Mezzotint. Graphic Arts Collection GA 2008.01243


Thomas Rowlandson (1757-1827) after Richard Newton (1777-1798), Giving up the ghost or one too many, ca.1813. Hand colored etching. Graphic Arts Collection GA 2014.00260.
A dying man lies on a miserable bed. A fat doctor sits asleep at the bedside. Beside him are the words:
“I purge I bleed I sweat em
Then if they Die I Lets em”

Interpretive fine binding in cast paper by Daniel E. Kelm

Thistles and Thorns: Abraham and Sarah at Bethel: [poem] by Paul Smyth; with wood engravings by Barry Moser (Omaha: Abattoir Editions, University of Nebraska at Omaha; printed by Harry Duncan, 1977). One of 5 copies bound by Dan Kelm in chestnut morocco, upper cover onlaid with a molded, relief portrait of Abraham; housed in a tray case which acts as a frame for the binding cover; tipped in note signed by binder. Recap GAX 33945740

It is hard to know where to begin when describing Thistles and Thorns, with text by the Massachusetts poet Paul Smyth (1944-2006) and wood engravings by Tennessee-born Barry Moser, printed by Harry Duncan (1916-1997) at his Omaha fine press, Abattoir Editions. Each are distinguished artisans in their own fields.

The Graphic Arts Collection holds one of only five copies of the book bound in a remarkable structure designed and constructed by Daniel E. Kelm, beginning with the cover image after a Moser wood engraving of Abraham, cast in paper from a clay relief by Elizabeth Solomon. The volume is housed in custom folding cloth box with paper spine label, simple on the outside and extraordinary when it is opened. This video shows Kelm demonstrating a few bindings on May 29, 2015 at Wide Awake Garage in Northampton, MA. This clip should begin with Thistles and Thorns, but it is worth watching the whole interview.

“Daniel E. Kelm is a book artist who enjoys expanding the concept of the book. He is known for his innovative structures as well as his traditional work. His expression as an artist emerges from the integration of work in science and the arts. Alchemy is a common theme in his book work. Before Daniel began his career in the book arts he received formal training in chemistry and taught at the University of Minnesota. He is known for his extensive knowledge of materials.
switched to an electric model.” =

Princeton University Library is fortunate to have nine fine press books bound by Daniel Kelm:

Claire Owen, Gabriel’s family (Philadelphia: Turtle Island Press, 1992). Graphic Arts Collection Z232.T87 O93
“Claire Owen wrote the story and etched the plates … The design … was a collaboration between Owen and Daniel Tucker. The book was set in Baskerville type, with Centaur used for the titles … The type and the plates were printed letterpress by Arthur Larson at Horton Tank Graphics. The binding in Chieftan leather was designed by Daniel Tucker and completed by Daniel Kelm … at the Wide Awake Garage … fifty-two copies numbered 1/52-52/52 and four Artist’s Proofs signed I/IV-IV/IV.”

An only kid, monoprints by Mikhail Magaril ([New York City]: Kuboaa, 1998). Cotsen Children’s Library, Folios 87784
“Printed in an edition of 18 signed & numbered copies by Russell Maret at Kuboaa, New York City. The text type is Centaur, designed by Bruce Rogers, printed on Rives de Lin paper. Each copy has eleven monoprints & one matrix transfer drawing by Mikhail Magaril. The sewn-board binding was designed & executed by Daniel Kelm, with a leather spine & cover paper hand-made by Timothy Barrett, housed in a drop-spine box made by the printer.”–Colophon.

Ligoranno/Reese, The Corona palimpsest (New York: Granary, 1996). Graphic Arts Collection Oversize Z232.G75 L53q
“‘The Corona palimpsest’ takes its name from the video/book installation made by Ligorano/Reese and which debuted at the Cristinerose Gallery in New York City in October, 1995. The collages come from a variety of sources: newspapers, art history books and magazines. They were printed by Joe Elliot and Anne Noonan at Soho Letterpress. The artists hand painted the book using stencils and paste paper methods. The text paper is 120 gram Arches text laid. The stills are from the video component of the installation, printed offset on Yu-jade … Daniel Kelm bound the edition at the Wide Awake Garage”–Colophon.

Altar book for Górecki: the Symphony of sorrowful songs by Henryk Górecki; lyrics in Polish and English translation (Middletown, CT: Robin Price, Publisher, 1996). Graphic Arts Collection Oversize Z232.P95 A47q
“Inspired by the 1992 recording of Henryk Górecki’s Symphony no. 3 … The bird illustrations are from seventeenth-century copperplate engravings by Francis Willughby. Photographed by John Wareham, the illustrations were digitally adapted and made into polymer plates by Gerald Lange. The woodcut was designed and carved by Keiji Shinohara. Paul Shaw provided calligraphy of the Polish lyrics. The typefaces are Guild Samson uncial & Perpetua, printed onto hand-stained Wahon paper. Daniel Kelm provided consultation on the triptych structure; box design & construction is by Franklin Nichols Woodworking”–Colophon.

Bunny Burson, Hidden in plain sight (St. Louis: Bunny Burson, 2015). Graphic Arts Collection, Q-000120
“Designed and printed at Emdash Studio in St. Louis, by Ken Botnick, and bound by Daniel Kelm at Wide Awake Garage in Easthampton, Massachusetts, in an edition of 27 copies. Issued in a black cloth-covered clamshell case with etchings of the front and back of an envelope attached to the front and back of the case.

Ken Botnick, Diderot project ([St. Louis, Mo.]: Emdash, 2015). Graphic Arts Collection 2015-0147Q
“This edition was completed during the January thaw of 2015 in our print shop in the Pierce Arrow Building, St. Louis, and is the work of Ken Botnick, editor, author, designer, printer and publisher. … The edition is bound by Daniel Kelm at the Wide Awake Garage, Easthampton, Massachusetts … All texts from the Encyclopedia are set in Walbaum Book ..”–Colophon.

Robert Bringhurst, The fragments of Parmenides & an English translation; wood engravings by Richard Wagener (Berkeley [Calif.]: Editions Koch, 2003). Graphic Arts Collection Oversize 2007-0073F
“This edition … was designed by Peter Koch and printed by hand … at Peter Koch Printers …There are 146 copies in all. The wood engravings were printed by the artist … Christopher Stinehour designed the Diogenes Greek in digital format at his stonecutting studio in Berkeley. Dan Carr designed and cut the Parmenides Greek by hand in steel, struck and justified the matrices and cast the type at the Golgonooza Letter Foundry. 120 numbered copies were bound by Peggy Gotthold in quarter leather … Twenty-six copies, lettered A to Z, were bound in full leather by Daniel Kelm.”–Colophon.

Mark Twain, The jumping frog. The private printing [i.e. history] of the “Jumping frog” story : an afterword by Samuel Clemens (Easthampton [Mass.]: Cheloniidae Press, 1985. Graphic Arts Collection L-000028
” … from “Mark Twain’s sketches, new and old, as it was first published in complete form, 1875, the American Publishing Co. … 325 copies of the book were printed by Wild Carrot Letterpress. The fifteen wood engravings were printed … by Harold McGrath.”–Colophon. Bound by Daniel Kelm in full undyed Oasis with onlays of the frog in repose before the jump on the front panel and after the jump on the back panel, with doublures showing the frog in midjump.

Thistles and thorns: Abraham and Sarah at Bethel: [poem] by Paul Smyth; with wood engravings by Barry Moser (Omaha: Abattoir Editions, University of Nebraska at Omaha, 1977. Graphic Arts RECAP-33945740
One of 5 copies bound by Dan Kelm in chestnut morocco, upper cover onlaid with a molded, relief portrait of Abraham; housed in a tray case which acts as a frame for the binding cover; tipped in note signed by binder.



The first and only criminal trial tried by the U.S. Supreme Court

Unidentified photographer, Portrait of the United States Supreme Court, also known as the Fuller Court, ca. 1907. Graphic Arts Collection


A photo of lynching victim Ed Johnson was found recently in the April 7, 1906, edition of The Topeka Daily Herald. (Photo courtesy of Sam Hall, David Moon and Mariann Martin)



In January 1906, a 19 year old carpenter from Chattanooga, Tennessee named Ed Johnson was wrongly convicted of raping a young girl and quickly sentenced to death. He was black, she was white, and the jury was white. There was clear injustice and after hearing the details, United States Supreme Court Justice John Marshall Harlan issued a stay of execution.

Before the Court could hear the appeal, a mob was allowed to break into the jail and drag Johnson to a nearby bridge to be lynched. When the rope broke, guns were pulled and he was shot to death.

At President Theodore Roosevelt’s orders, U.S. Attorney General William Moody sent investigators to Tennessee and on May 28, Moody did something unprecedented, then and now. He filed a petition charging Sheriff Shipp, six deputies and 19 leaders of the lynch mob with contempt of the Supreme Court. The justices unani­mously approved the petition and agreed to retain original ju­risdiction in the matter.



What followed was United States v. Shipp, 203 U.S. 563 (1906), argued February 12 until June 29, 1907. This was the first and only time the Supreme Court tried a criminal trial. Chief Justice Fuller personally read his majority opinion on May 24, 1909, finding Shipp, one of his deputies and four leaders of the mob guilty of contempt. Shipp and two others were ordered to serve 90 days in jail, while the others were sentenced to 60 days, all at the U.S. jail in the District of Columbia. Like his co-defendants, Shipp was released early. Returning to Chattanooga by train on Jan. 30,



An article in the New York Times stated, “The open defiance of the Supreme Court of the Uni­ted States has no parallel in the history of the court. No justice can say what will be done. All, however, agree in saying that the sanctity of the Su­preme Court shall be upheld if the power resides in the court and the government to accomplish such a vindication of the majesty of the law.”

The Graphic Arts Collection recently acquired a studio portrait of the Fuller Court, which oversaw the criminal trial. The photograph was probably early in 1907, since Moody was elected to the court in December 1906. Top row: William Rufus Day (1849-1923), Joseph McKenna (1843-1926), Oliver Wendell Holmes (1841-1935), William Henry Moody (1853-1917). Bottom row: Edward Douglass White Jr. (1845-1921), John Marshall Harlan (1833-1911), Chief Justice Melville Weston Fuller (1833-1910), David Josiah Brewer (1837-1909), and Rufus W. Peckham (1838-1909)




“Ninety-four years after the lynching, in February 2000, Hamilton County Criminal Judge Doug Meyer overturned Johnson’s conviction after hearing arguments that Johnson did not receive a fair trial because of the all-white jury and the judge’s refusal to move the trial from Chattanooga, where there was much publicity about the case.”



Mark Curriden and Leroy Phillps Jr., Contempt of court : the turn-of-the-century lynching that launched 100 years of federalism (New York: Anchor Books, 2001). Recap KF224.J63 C87 2001




Legal experts say that United States v. Shipp and its predecessor case, Tennessee v. Johnson, forever changed the practice of criminal law in the United States. Between them, the cases featured:

    • The first grant of a federal habeas corpus petition by the U.S. Supreme Court in a pending state criminal case.
    • The first stay of execution issued by the full Supreme Court in a state death penalty case that declared the state defendant to be a federal prisoner.
    • The first time in which a black lawyer was lead counsel in a case before the Supreme Court.
    • The first and only time in history that the Supreme Court retained original jurisdiction in a criminal case.
    • The first criticism of state elected officials and courts by the Supreme Court for conducting criminal trials under the influence of the threat of mob rule, thus denying a defendant the right to a fair trial and undermining the rule of law.

Formerly known as

This is a confirmed portrait from the Graphic Arts Collection of the Dutch historian and cartographer John Speed (1594-1678), who biographers often compliment as “having had twelve sons, and six daughters, by one wife.”– James Granger, A Biographical History of England, from Egbert the Great to the Revolution … (J. Rivington and Sons, 1804).

The portrait may or may not relate to an oil painting in London’s National Portrait Gallery, currently labeled:
Unknown man, formerly known as John Speed
by Unknown artist
oil on panel, circa 1550-1575
© National Portrait Gallery



How many other portraits are now “formerly known as”?



Online London’s National Portrait Gallery turns up 223:

These include 12 portraits of unknown women formerly known as Anne Boleyn, such as: Probably by Robert White, after Hans Holbein the Younger, Unknown woman formerly known as Anne Boleyn, line engraving, published 1681?, NPG D21020

Online the British Museum currently lists 79 portraits formerly known as someone, now unknown (although my count in F. O’Donoghue, Engraved British Portraits Preserved in the Department of Prints and Drawings in the British Museum, 1908, lists over 200). Not one of the 1,650 portraits of William Shakespeare is listed as ‘formerly known as’.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art holds the doubly confusing: Thomas Wright (1792-1849) after Cornelius Janssen (formerly known as), William Shakespeare (formerly known as) 1827. Stipple engraving in Wivell’s Inquiry into the History of the Shakespeare Portraits (1827).

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, Harris Brisbane Dick Fund, 1917 (17.3.756-2422)

“…based on a painting then attributed to Cornelius Johnson (or Janssen), owned by Charles Jennens and believed to represent Shakespeare at the age of forty. That worked passed from Jennens, to the Duke of Hamilton, Duke of Somerset, then Lady Ramsden at Bulstrode Park, near Reading, before entering the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington DC. Today, the “Janssen Portrait” it is no longer believed to portray Shakespeare and has been retitled “Portrait of an Unknown Gentleman, possibly Thomas Overbury” (see also 17.3.756-1714).”

Artist: After Anonymous, Anglo-Netherlandish, 17th century
Artist: Once said to be after Cornelius Janssen (British, London, baptised 1593–1661 Utrecht)
Sitter: Once said to portray William Shakespeare (British, Stratford-upon-Avon 1564–1616 Stratford-upon-Avon)


In addition, the MET has a portrait of the artist formerly known as Prince, by the artist currently known as Prince:

Richard Prince (born 1949), Untitled, 1999. 4 gelatin silver prints and a button. Described: “Signed in ink on printed card attached to frame verso: “R [illegible]”; printed text on card affixed to frame verso: “Left to right an inscribed Barbara Streisand, the artist formerly known as Prince, Sid Vicious, with an attached untitled “Joke” pin and Sylvester Stallone with a signed card by Stallone. [signature] 1999″

“…In his most recent Publicity series, the artist created Duchampian “assisted readymades” by obsessively collecting 8 x 10-inch glossy promotional photographs of show business personalities-in this example, Barbra Streisand, Prince, Sid Vicious, and Sylvester Stallone. Interspersing “authentic” autographs from celebrities (or usually their assistants) with those forged by the artist himself, Prince [not the artist formerly known as Prince] makes explicit the issues of authorship and appropriation that he has explored throughout his career, by demonstrating that the meanings of images are determined primarily by the unruly desires of the viewer.”.

Our database turns up the much less interesting: Princeton University, formerly known as the College of New Jersey and Richardson Auditorium formerly known as Alexander Hall.

More on our engraving:

Salomon Savery (1594-1678), John Speed, ca. 1631. Engraving. Also used as a frontispiece to Speed’s Prospect of the Most Famous Parts of the World and History of Great British Isles Atlas, Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine as well as the combined editions of the two atlases. Hollstein D.24.62 (No. 133). Graphic Arts Collection Dutch prints

Latin dedication legend by publisher George Humble: “AEt [ernae] M [emoriae] | Viri clarissimi | Joannis Speed, Farndoniae nati in Comitatu Cestriae, Civis Londinensis, Mercatorum Scissorum fratris, | Servi fidelissimi regiarum majestatum Elizae, Jacobi, et Caroli nunc Superstitis: Terrarum nostra = | rum Geographi accurati, et fidi antiquitatis Britannicae Historiographi, Genealogiae Sacrae elegan = | tissimi delineatoris; qui post quam annos 77. superaverat non tam morbo confectus, quam mortalitatis | taedio lassatus, Corpore suo levat [us] est July 28, 1629 “
=The eternal memory of the famous John Speed, born at Farndon in the county of Chester, citizen of London, brother of the MS [?], most loyal servant of the royal majesties Elisabeth, Jacob I and the now reigning Karl I .; the exact geographer of our country and faithful historiographer of British antiquities, the witty designer of a biblical genealogy; who, after 77 years behind him, was not so exhausted from sickness as exhausted from his body from weariness from mortality on July 28, 1629.

The DNB lists John Speed (1552?-1629) as historian and cartographer and continues: “…On 15 June 1598, on Greville’s recommendation, Queen Elizabeth gave Speed ‘a waiter’s room in the custom-house’ … Speed first used his leisure in making maps of the counties of England. … These, accompanied by a description of each map, were collected in 1611 in Speed’s Theatre of the Empire of Great Britaine, for which George Humble, the publisher, had received a license three vears before…. A second edition appeared in 1614, and a third in 1627, with the title A Prospect of the most Famous Parts of the World. …Meanwhile Speed had become a member of the Society of Antiquaries, where he met Camden, Cotton, and other scholars. Encouraged by their help, he had commenced his great work The History of Great Britaine under the Conquests of ye Bomans, Saxons, Danes, and Normans . . . . An anonymous portrait of Speed was in 1879 transferred from the British Museum to the National Portrait Gallery, London. An engraving by G. Savery, from a painting belonging to Speed’s grandson Samuel, is prefixed to the later editions of most of Speed’s works.”

James Granger, A Biographical History of England, from Egbert the Great to the Revolution: Consisting of Characters Disposed in Different Classes… (J. Rivington and Sons, 1804), p. 320 below:

Trombinoscopes of Franck

Franck, Cadets at the Ecole Polytechnique, Paris, 1861. Albumen print from collodian negative. Patrick Montgomery’s History of Photography


Contrary to the social distancing we practice today, French photographer François Marie Louis Gabriel Gobinet de Villecholle (1816-1906, also known as Franck or Franck de Villecholle) gained a reputation for his jam-packed group portraits. Either cut and pasted then rephotographed as one assemblage (as seen below) or captured live, Franck’s work has been called trombinoscopes, or visual membership directories.

The Graphic Arts Collection recently acquired a book of ten photographic plates visually documenting the French National Assembly of 1874. In total, the volume presents 630 individual portraits of deputies sitting in the National Assembly, session 1871-1876, which was the first elected Assembly of the Third Republic in France following the 1871 Versailles armistice. According to my count, some plates hold up to 77 portraits, although each is different.

Franck learned to make daguerreotypes around 1845 and paper photographs soon after, working until the early 1880s in Barcelona and then Paris. He taught photography at the Ecole Impérale centrale des arts et manufactures in 1863 and worked as a professor at the Ecole Centrale in 1862. Read more in Elizabeth Anne McCauley’s Industrial Madness: commercial photography in Paris, 1848-1871 [only available in paper].

Thanks to Patrick Montgomery’s History of Photography pages, here are two other group portraits captured live. Below is Franck’s Ecole Centrale des Arts et Manufactures, Hôtel Salé, Paris, ca. 1855. Salted paper print. Montgomery notes: “This photograph comes from a set of documents relating to the Ecole Centrale des Arts et Manufactures in Paris. The building now houses the Picasso Museum and the professor standing at the bottom right of the photo, is probably Mr. Auguste Perdonnet who taught steam engine mechanics and everything related to railroads. Mr. Perdonnet was appointed director of the Central School in 1862, and remained in that position until his death in 1867.”


Here and at the top is Franck’s Cadets at the Ecole Polytechnique, Paris, 1861. “The Ecole Polytechnique was established during the French Revolution in 1794 by Gaspard Monge, and it became a military school under Napoleon in 1804. It is still under the control of the French Ministry of Defence today. Initially, the school was located in the Latin Quarter of central Paris, and it moved to Palaiseau on the Saclay Plateau about 14 km southwest of Paris in 1976.”

The entire 1965 Album-contemporain: contenant les biographies sommaires de trois cents des principaux personnages de notre époque, with text by Justin Lallier and 304 photographic portraits by Franck can be found online here:


And the Musée d’Orsay offers this Franck assembly of literary figures:



Franck (1816-1906), Photographe de l’Assemblée natonale 1874. Paris: l’Assemblée natonale, 1874. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2020- in process.


Gestes [Gestures]: Texte de Raymond Duncan. Bois dessinés, gravés, enluminés et tirés par Marc Roux ([Paris]: Raymond Duncan, 1921). Copy 30 of 100. “Tirages, 1 ex: spécial marqué A, 24 ex: grand luxe de B a Z, 100 ex: de 1 a 100 exemplaire”– t.p. verso/ “Achevé le 10 avril 1921.”–Colophon. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2020- in process

In 1919 Raymond Duncan (1874-1966), wife Penelope, and their teenage son Menalkas, moved back to Paris where he reestablished his Akademia Raymond Duncan at 21 Rue Bonaparte.

With his long, flowing hair and Grecian robes, Duncan became a fixture along the streets of Paris and in the galleries and theaters. He organized international conferences each year at his université philosophique and developed a small following of disciples.

Students were taught to weave, print, and create the other decorative arts sold by the Akademia, in exchange for vegetarian meals and lessons in Duncan’s philosophy of a simple, holistic lifestyle. His sister Isadora Duncan did not appreciate the austerity of her brother’s commune and moved back to Russia where she established her own dance school in Moscow. Conversely, Lucia Joyce, daughter of James Joyce, became deeply immersed in Raymond’s Akademia and studied with him for several years.

Duncan collaborated on Gestes with his friend Marcel (here spelled as “Marc” on the cover and title-page) a year before Roux’s death. The artist suffered from an illnesses contracted while a medical orderly during World War I, and was forced to switch from his usual copperplate engraving to the softer woodcuts for this project but the style fit Duncan’s verse perfectly. Roux printed 100 copies of the book in his studio at 9 Rue Falguiere, published on April 10, 1921.

Only two other copies are held in institutional collections, one at the Bibliothèque nationale de France and the second at the Houghton library, Harvard University. This would be a third known copy of an extraordinary book.

Raymond Duncan’s inspiration was the Antique, but his work needs to be set alongside the other stylistic influences of the era including Japonisme, …Indian and Persian art, His life and work should also be related to other contemporary international art movements operating throughout Europe: the Weiner Werkstätte, the Ecole Martine, Charles Rennie Mackintosh, and the Glasgow School, and Bloomsbury and the Omega workshops. His dress and textiles are part of an important group of hand-crafted objects created by artist-designers that include …Paul Poiret, who was patronized by Isadora, and is said to have copied designs from Raymond (L, Duncan 2014). –Charlotte Nicklas, Dress History: New Directions in Theory and Practice (Bloomsbury Publishing, 2015)


Mayakovsky carrying his “soul on a plate for the dinner of the future.”

Long before the movie Being John Malkovich, Vladimir Mayakovsky (1893-1930) wrote the play Vladimir Mayakovsky (Tragedy), performing the leading role himself. Originally titled Владимир Маяковский, the 20-year-old poet finished his script in October 1913 and the play premiered in December at the Luna Park theater in St. Petersburg, alongside the futurist opera Victory over the Sun. The following year 500 copies of his visually striking poetry were published.

This rare and amazing book is now in the Graphic Arts Collection. Here a little background in rough translation:

The play, which had two working titles, “The Railway” (Железная дорога) and “The Riot of Things” (Восстание вещей), was written in the summer of 1913, in Kuntsevo near Moscow . . . . Sister Lyudmila Mayakovskaya remembered: “Volodyi felt very lonely. For days he was wandering through Kuntsevo, Krylatsky and Rublyovo parks, composing his tragedy … [At the house] he scribbled words, lines and rhymes on pieces of paper and cigarette boxes, [pleading with] mom to not throw anything away. ” [By] 9 November 1913, the Mayakovsky presented the copy of the [play] to the Petersburg theater censorship commission, having cut off some of the [controversial] bits. —

Two days before the premiere the entire cast resigned because of rumors that they were going to be beaten up by the audience. Mayakovsky found a group of art students who agreed to take their places. There were only two performances, on Tuesday and Thursday. Eggs were thrown.

In the prologue Mayakovsky’s says he feels that “the wheel of a locomotive will hug my neck,” that is, he feels a lethal embrace of the dynamism and postrationality of daily life. …Feels like today. This is echoed in his explanation of why the play uses his name, to which he answered: “It is the name of the poet in the play who is doomed to suffer for all.” (Jangfeldt, Mayakovsky. A Biography, 2014, p. 65).

Vladimir Mayakovsky (1893-1930). Vladimir Mayakovsky, a tragedy (“Vladimīr Mai︠a︡kovskīĭ” : tragedīi︠a︡ ). Москва : Изд. 1-го журнала русских футуристов (Moscow: zhurnala russkikh futuristov), 1914. Seven prints by David and Vladimir Burliuk. Graphic Arts Collection GAX 2020- in process



Please forgive the fuzzy images taken with my cell phone as we were leaving last week, but I didn’t want to miss the opportunity to post this amazing new addition to the Graphic Arts Collection.

Editions de l’Akademia Raymond Duncan

Thirty books dating from 1914 to 1951 printed and published by Raymond Duncan (1874-1966) are now held in the Graphic Arts Collection at Princeton. It appears to be the most complete collection outside the Bibliothèque nationale de France.

The older brother of the celebrated dancer Isadora Duncan, Raymond was also a dancer, as well as a philosopher, spinner, weaver, and printer of both letterpress books and decorated fabrics. Born in San Francisco, where he came to know Leo and Gertrude Stein, Raymond lived in Paris, Berlin, Athens, and New York City at various times throughout his bohemian life. He pioneered a holistic life-style inspired by ancient Greece and founded in Paris in 1911 the Akademia, a school where weekly concerts were held, international conferences organized, and useful arts taught free.

From 1911 on, Duncan established a private letter press in Paris and created a typeface “nearest to his ideal” following the principles of upper-case Greek letters: “I chose the nearest makeshift toward my letters at the foundry of Allain Guillaume Paris, type that was made for imitation engraving” (L’Alphabet, 1948). The collection includes Gestes (1921), the book by Duncan, but entirely engraved and illustrated, and self-published by his friend Marcel Roux. More about individual titles to come. Here is the list:

1 – Pamphlets and books by Raymond Duncan:

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Les Moyens de grève. Conférence par Raymond Duncan à la Bourse du Travail, Paris, le 5 mai 1912, sous la présidence du camarade Georges Yvetot. Paris: Akademia Raymond Duncan, 1914. 8vo, stitched. Conference held during the strike of 1912 about a new way of social struggle.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Echos de mon atelier. Paris: Imprimé à la main par Raymond Duncan 21 rue Bonaparte, 1919. 8vo, stitched. Duncan’s philosophical manifesto, beautifully printed, on one side of each leaf. Illustrated with 3 woodcut vignettes.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). La Danse et la Gymnastique. Conférence faite le 4 mai 1914 à l’Université hellénique. Paris: Akademia Raymond Duncan, 1914. 8vo, purple wrappers. From June 1913 to the end of the Great War Raymond Duncan established a community in Greece and in Albania during the Balkan Wars. Very few titles have been issued on his press during this period. Duncan developed his theory of movement at the age of 17 based on the economy of work and awareness of the body during labor. Gymnastics were intended to prepare bodies for dance and considered as a salvation tool for humanity.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). La Musique et l’Harmonie. Conférence faite le 6 mai 1914, à l’université hellénique par Raymond Duncan ; conférence faite le 6 mai 1914, à l’Université hellénique, Salle de géographie. Sténographie d’Aristide Pratelle. Paris: Akademia Raymond Duncan, 1914. 8vo, blue wrappers.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Les Travaux d’Héraklès, Conférence par Raymond Duncan, à l’Université philosophique, Paris, 9 mars 1919. [Bois de Menalkas Duncan.]. Paris: Editions Raymond Duncan, 1919. Pamphlet 8vo, stitched. Illustrated with 5 woodcuts, engraved by the author’s son Menalkas, at the age of 15: 2 full-page, 1 repeated on wrappers, hand-colored. After the war Duncan’s press was installed 21 rue Bonaparte.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Prometheus (les grands crucifiés). Conférence par Raymond Duncan à l’université philosophique Paris le 16 mars 1919. Paris: Raymond Duncan, 1919. 8vo, stitched. Illustrated with six woodcuts: 4 full-page, 2 vignettes.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Les Muses. Les neuf filles de Mnimosyni. Leur éloge par Raymond Duncan à l’université philosophique Paris le 30 mars 1919. Paris: Raymond Duncan, 1919. 3 full-page woodcuts, one repeated, one woodcut vignette to wrappers. Duncan states his future goals: “he visited the large cities of the world in search of the Nine muses. Arriving in Paris and not finding them, he realized that he must create them himself or at least provide an atmosphere in which nine muses might survive” (Roatcap, Raymond Duncan, p. 22).

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Theokritos. Conférence pastorale par Raymond Duncan à l’université philosophique. Paris: imprimé à l’oeuvre Raymond Duncan, 1919. 8vo, stitched. Illustrated with five woodcuts: one half-page to title page and wrappers, 2 full page, 2 vignettes.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Theokritos. Same publication re-issued after 1929 at the address 31 rue de Seine, with new wrappers.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Orpheus. Les Mystères d’Eleusis. Une conférence et quelques hymnes par Raymond Duncan, 16 février 1919. Paris: Imprimé d’après la stéonographie à l’Akademia Raymond Duncan, 1919. Illustrated with one full-page woodcut repeated on wrappers and two vignettes. Wrappers printed in red and black. 8vo, stitched.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). La Parole dans le désert. Genesis chantée par Raymond Duncan à la Salle des Agriculteurs le 22 avril 1920. [Paris: [ca. 1920]. 8vo, stitched.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Gestes. Bois dessinés, graves, enluminés et tirés par Marc Roux. No place [Paris, Marcel Roux], 10 April 1921. 4to, unbound, illustrated wrappers. A remarkable and rare book, woodcut throughout, illustrated with 15 full-page hand-colored plates, plus 2 woodcuts on the wrappers. Gouache highlight throughout the engraved text printed in light brown ink. First edition self-published in 125 copies: one of 100 copies (not numbered). The book was entirely woodcut, text and illustration, by the author’s friend Marcel Roux (1878-1922), named here Marc.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Oidipous. Tragédie en cinq actes. Présenté la première fois à au théâtre Femina à Paris le 6 avril 1927. Paris: Editions de l’Akademia, 1927. 8vo. With an abstract of the theatrical works by Raymond Duncan at the end. Autograph inscription to title page, reproduction of a photograph of the author mounted to preliminary leaf.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Poèmes de parole torrentielle. [Paris]: Raymond Duncan, 1927. 8vo. One of 200 large paper copies, signed and inscribed by the author.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). De la caverne au temple ou de l’architecture. Paris: Editions Raymond Duncan, no date [ca. 1928]. 8vo, illustrated with two woodcut vignettes to wrappers. A conference on architecture followed by a debate with the audience.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Initiation aux arts. De la parole à l’idéal ou de la poésie. Conférence faite rue de la Sorbonne à Paris le 11 février 1928. Paris: Editions Raymond Duncan, 1928. Large 8vo, stitched. Printed in 500 copies.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). L’Amour à Paris. L’Angoisse de la solitude et la passion de la foule en douleurs d’enfantement de l’amour du nouveau siècle. Conférence donnée le 22 janvier 1932. Paris: Editions Raymond Duncan, 1932. 12mo. This conference was published rue de Seine, where the Akademia moved in 1929. One year later Duncan purchased a “Le Roy founding machine rebuilt especially for me to found type from the smallest up to 36 points and since I have been printing nearly exclusively from my own type” (l’Alphabet).

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Etincelles de mon enclume. Paris: Akademia Raymond Duncan, no date [1937]. Narrow 8vo, stitched. Wrappers printed in sepia. Collection of quotes from conferences and articles by Raymond Duncan, dated between 1912 and 1937. Bibliography of books printed by Raymond Duncan. Autograph inscription to Jessie Hara, August 18, 1946, to title.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Etincelles de mon enclume. Second edition, enlarged. Paris: Akademia Raymond Duncan, 1939 [1955]. Wrappers printed in black. Portraits of Raymond Duncan mounted in. Edited by Raymond Duncan’s second wife Aia Bertrand, a Latvian expatriate. Autograph inscription to half title.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Poèmes parlés. Essais extemporanés. Paris: Akademia Raymond Duncan, no date [ca. 1949]. 8vo. Edition limited to 500 copies. Collection of texts presented by Raymond Duncan at the Akademia principally during WW2.

Raymond Duncan (1874-1966). Winter Exhibition of Parisian Art. Raymond Duncan presented by the Norfolk Society of Arts. Paris: Editions Raymond Duncan, no date [ca. 1950]. 8vo, stitched. Exhibition catalogue illustrated with reproductions of woodcuts, paintings and portraits. Wrappers illustrated with to woodcut vignettes printed in two colors. Copy printed on simili-japon.

2 – Books published and printed by Raymond Duncan:

René Patris d’Uckermann. La Rose assassinée. Dialogue de fous. Paris: Imprimé par Raymond Duncan, avril 1922. Large 8vo. The booklet bears the achevé d’imprimer: “Ce livre a été imprimé par Raymond Duncan typographe fidèle aux muses”. Patris’ Dialogue de fous was presented by Raymond Duncan on April 26 1921 at the Comédie Montaigne and issued one year later at his quarters 34 rue de Colisée, on the right bank where he was temporarily established.

Marc-Auran. Le Jardin d’amour. Paris: Editions Raymond Duncan, 1937. 8vo, stitched. Limited in 500 copies.

Marc La Roche. Le Pré blanc. Paris: Editions de l’Akademia, 1940. 12mo, stapled. Limited to 25 copies. Illustrated with a portrait by the author.

René Le Scieller. Mon frère ressuscité. Scènes et récits. Paris: Akademia Raymond Duncan, 1947. 12mo. The number of copies issued is higher than usual (1,000). This may explain the use of conventional typefaces for the text. The author met Raymond Duncan in New York, where he worked at the United Nations. Long autograph inscription: “Au Président Edouard Herriot, que j’ai – témoin muet et jamais déçu – approché pendant des années…”.

Jacques de Marquette. Introduction à la mystique comparée. Hindouisme, bouddhismes, Grèce-Israël, Christianisme, Islam. Paris: Akademia Raymond Duncan, 1948. 8vo. Printed in 1,000 copies. Conference held at Lowell Institute in Boston. Complete with the erratum.

Louise Peabody Sargent (1856-1949). Collected Poems. Paris: Akademia Raymond Duncan, 1949. Large 8vo. Limited to 150 numbered copies. Peabody Sargent of Boston origin befriended Raymond Duncan. The collection of her poems is accompanied by 2 obituaries, the author having passed away when the book was under press.

Lillian Everts. While the Past Burns And Lost Edition. With translations in French. Paris: Editions Akademia Raymond Duncan, 1950. Large 8vo. A new printing type appears in this bilingual “de luxe” edition published as the Akademia Raymond Duncan prize for poetry. The poems received the Lantern Publication Award in 1945 and 1949. The translation is by Abel Doysié.

Blanche Blanc. Mes poèmes. Paris: Akademia Raymond Duncan, 1951. 8vo. Poems printed in a different type than Duncan’s usual upper-case type.

Jehanne Louise Berenger. L’Alphabet de l’amour. Paris: Akademia Raymond Duncan, 1951. 8vo. Poems printed in a different type than Duncan’s usual upper-case type.

Invitation card to 3 piano concerts by André Asselin at the Akademia 31 rue de Seine, printed by Raymond Duncan.


Orson Welles / Around The World 1955 / Paris


Horsford’s Acid Phosphate

Front covers
Back covers

While clearing out a storage room, a dozen or so copies of this advertisement were found. Eben Norton Horsford’s obituary in Harvard Crimson ran on January 3, 1893:

Professor Horsford died very suddenly of heart disease at his home in Cambridge Sunday afternoon. He was apparently in the best of health on Saturday, and to the many who knew him the announcement of his death will seem almost increditable [sic]. Eben Norton Horsford was born at Moscow, New York, July 27, 1818. He attended the district and other schools of that place until he was thirteen, when he entered the Livingston County High School.

In 1834 he was employed for a short time in railroad surveys, and then entered the Renssaller Institute where he was graduated a civil engineer in 1837. For the next two years he was engaged under Professor Hall in the geological survey of New York. From 1839 to 1843 he was the professor of mathematics and natural science at the Albany Female Academy, and during this time he lectured on Chemistry at Newark College, Delaware. In 1843 he went to Germany where for two years he studied chemistry under Liebig.

On his return to America he was appointed Rumford Professor of applied sciences at Harvard. He resigned this office in 1861 and since that time he has devoted much of his time to the study of chemistry and to chemical manufactures. In all he has taken out about thirty patents, most of them in a chemical line. In 1847 he married. His wife died in 1855 and in 1857 he married again. He had five daughters.

Outside of his professional career, Professor Horsford engaged in many works of general utility. One of his first works on returning from Germany was to investigate and select the proper material for the service pipes of the Boston Water Works. He was a member of the committee for the defense of Boston Harbor in the Civil War. He also devised a marching ration for the army which was very widely adopted. In 1873 he was one of the United States’ commissioners to the World’s Fair in Vienna, and in 1876 he was commissioner at the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia.

Of late years Professor Horsford has taken a great interest in archaeology. At the end of Commonwealth Avenue, he erected a statue of Lief Ericson at the spot where he believed that he landed. Another of his researches resulted in the discovery of the site of the ancient city of Norumbega, at the mouth of Stony Brook in Weston, where he erected a stone tower in 1889. Among his literary work has been the publication of numerous chemical researches in the scientific publications of Europe and this country. Prof. Horsford established the Rumford Chemical works in Providence, and was President of the company for many years.

Below: Rumford Chemical Works and Mill House Historic District

Project completed.

Classes cancelled? Travel postponed? Events delayed? Need a project?

This lovely print (below) has been sitting in a box marked “unknown Dutch” for ? 50 years. It would be nice to identify it. Looking at the back, it appears to have been removed (cut) from a book or broadside. Can anyone figure out the text and then, the book, and then, the print? We would be most grateful.

Do not continue reading if you want to solve this one by yourself.

Here is the book, found by Sérgio Costa Araújo in sunny Porto.

Cats, Jacob, 1577-1660, Proteus ofte Minne-beelden verandert in Sinne-beelden door [Tot Rotterdam : Bij Pieter van Waesberge boecvercooper, an. 1627]
In Dutch, Latin, and French verse.
The illustrations are engraved by Jan Gerrits Swelinck from designs by Andriaen Pietersz. van de Venne.
The title page is engraved; at foot of title: Met privilegie voor 15. Iaren.
Half-title reads: Proteus ofte Minne-beelden verandert in Sinnebeelden door J. Catz.
Contents, quoted from divisional title unless otherwise noted, each with separate pagination: “Sinne ende Minnebeelden· Van I. Catz.” (A-2Q⁴ 2R² ), an expanded version of “Silenus Alcibiadis”; “Emblemata D· Iacobi Catsii, in linguam Anglicam transfusa” (² A⁴ b-c⁴ d² ), an English verse translation of the foregoing sometimes attributed to Josuah Sylvester; “Emblemata moralia et æconomica” (3A-3L⁴ 3M² ), with illustrations copied from “Maechden plicht”; the Latin text, with French translation, of the dialogue between Anna and Phyllis from “Maechden plicht” ((a)-(f)⁴, no divisional or caption title); “Galathee ofte Harder Minne-klachte” (a-g⁴ [pointing hand]f[pointing hand]⁴).

This is emblem 28. Peasant couple with onions. Peeling onions, which causes weeping, as symbol of keenness in love, friendship in hard times and tribulation.” Additional information here: