The Old Print Shop

Prodigal Son Receiving his Patrimony. The, - The Prodigal Son Revelling with Harlots. - The Prodigal Son in Misery. - The Prodigal Son Returned to His Father.

  • ARTIST: Amos Doolittle

  • PUBLISHER: Published by Shelton & Kensett Cheshire Connec. Dec 1, 1814.

  • MEDIUM: Engravings,

    DATE: 1814

  • EDITION SIZE: Image size 12 5/8 x 9 7/16" (321 x 240 mm).

  • DESCRIPTION: Full titles "The Prodigal Son Receiving his Patrimony : He gathered all together and took his Journey into a far country." "The Prodigal Son Revelling with Harlots : He wasted his substance with riotious living." "The Prodigal Son in Misery. : He would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat." "The Prodigal Son Returned to His Father : Father I have sinned agains' Heaven and in thy sight and am no more worthy to be called thy son."<br><br> Amos Doolittle (1754-1832) One of the earliest American engravers on copper.<br><br> Doolittle was born in Cheshire, Connecticut and lived and worked the majority of his life in or around New Haven. At 12 or 13 years of age he apprenticed to Eliakim Hitchcock, a silversmith and jeweler and later set up his own shop in New Haven. It is believed that he taught himself engraving and later became a prolific producer of engraved prints, including historical scenes, bookplates, portraits, maps and biblical illustrations.<br><br> Doolittle most important prints were a set of four different views of the battle of Lexington and Concord. Doolittle was a member of the “Governor’s Guard” of New Haven, under command of Captain Benedict Arnold. Upon news of these historic battles, the unit quickly assembled and marched to Cambridge. Upon arrival there Doolittle along with the artist Ralph Earl, visited the battle sites sought out eyewitnesses and minutemen who fought the battles. He asked them what happened, where and when and recorded what he heard. Upon his return to New Haven he quickly engraved and advertised the four prints, both plain and colored. Today these prints are considered to be the only accurate visual recording of the battles and are of the utmost rarity and importance.<br><br> Other titles of importance include a view of Federal Hall, A display of the United States, A New Display of the United States, The Looking Glass and a set of four images of the Prodigal Son. He also engraved many maps, both as separates and those to be included in atlases.<br><br>

  • ADDITIONAL INFO: Set of four, three with early nineteenth-century frames (one frame is newly made). The first three prints are printed on paper that has a fragment of a map printed on the verso. The map was created c.1819, so the printing date of these prints should follow the date of the map.

  • CONDITION: Overall, good condition, occasional staining. There is a small loss in the top margin of "Revelling with Harlots" and a larger tear in the center of "Returned to His Father." The color on these prints is always primitive, so the small spots of color on these prints are original.