This aquatint print is based on a drawing, made on the spot by Major (later Lieutenant-Colonel) Thomas McNiven. A key below the image identifies many of the buildings and features included in the landscape.
The work was engraved and published by artist, printmaker and publisher Robert Havell junior at his premises at 77 Oxford Street, London. Havell advertised the work for sale in the back pages of his edition of ‘Audubon the Naturalist’, along with his ‘Panorama of King George’s Sound’ and other topographical and natural history prints. The advertisement explains that Havell has ‘on Sale a very extensive and well selected Assortment of ENGRAVINGS and WORKS OF ART, with the Prices affixed’ and that all are ‘Engraved, Printed and Coloured, under his entire inspection, on his Establishment.’
Robert Havell junior was the son of painter, engraver and publisher Robert Havell senior. Together with his father, Robert junior formed the firm of R. Havell & Son. Father and son worked jointly on numerous projects, including their ‘Series of Views of the Public Buildings & Bridges in London’ (1821-22) and ‘Birds of America’ (1827-39) for the American ornithologist John James Audubon. However, Robert senior died in 1832, leaving his son to complete the project. In the following few years Havell focused on oil painting. As a result of his friendship with Audubon, he decided to emigrate to America, moving to Tarrytown, New York state, in 1857. Here he became a leading member of the Hudson River school. He died in Tarrytown at the age of 84.
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