The Old Print Shop

Thomas Davies


Thomas Davies, F.R.S. F.L.S., (c.1737-1812) British officer in the Royal Regiment of Artillery. In 1755 while at the Royal Military Academy, Woolwich, he received training in topographic drawing. Soon after he served four tours in the Americas during the French and Indian War. In PICTURING AMERICA, Gloria Deak writes "Davies produced a sizable number of North American views during his extensive posting abroad as an officer in His Majesty's forces" (p. 105). At the conclusion of the French and Indian War, he spent many years documenting, through maps and watercolors, the regions surrounding Lake Ontario. An unsophisticated and unschooled approach to "drawing on the spot", as well as the precisionist hand of a true naturalist, allowed Davies his unique expression. Upon his return to England he published a series of six folio sized engravings. This portfolio is extremely rare and was likely privately published.