George Washington 1732-1799

Charles Henry Hart (1847-1918), Catalogue of the Engraved Portraits of Washington (New York: The Grolier Club, 1904). “One of an edition of four hundred and twenty-five copies printed on American hand-made paper …” Graphic Arts division GAX 2008- in process

In 1904, the Grolier Club in New York City published a sumptuous, limited edition catalogue in honor of the centenary of George Washington’s death. The book features not only a complete listing of Washington portrait engravings but also 31 original mezzotint and photogravure prints.

Frank O. Briggs, of Trenton, N.J. purchased a copy, which eventually made it to the graphic arts division at Princeton University. Inside the front cover are a number of sheets of cream wove paper with the watermark of George Washington.

“Photogravure after mezzotint engraved by Valentine Green.”
“Engraved in mezzotint by S. Arlent Edwards from an original in oil, which was probably executed in 1798 or 1799.”

The Miliani Mill, Fabriano, Italy, created this watermark of Washington in recognition of the bicentennial celebration of his birth in 1932. Later, the Graphic Arts collection used it as a keepsake for their friends. The portrait is after a bust of Washington done by the sculptor Jean-Antoine Houdon, who visited Mount Vernon in 1785. Houdon’s profile is said to have been one of Washington’s favorites.

“Photogravure after line engraving
attributed to John Norman.”