A scarce steel engraving on paper entitled “Marion Crossing the Pedee” {sic}, 1851 after William Tylee Ranney (American, 1813-1857)

A scarce steel engraving on paper entitled “Marion Crossing the Pedee” {sic}, after William Tylee Ranney (working 1813-1857)

Marion pedee
(Simply click on the image for an enlargement)

Published by the American Art-Union, New York and printed by J. Dalton. “The American Art Union” was a member supported art publisher, which annually produced and issued contemporary prints to its subscribers between the years 1840 and 1851. It was originally called “The Apollo Association for the Promotion of the Fine Arts in the United States”; an association dedicated to the promotion of fine arts of all varieties in the United States.

The association was renamed “The American Art-Union” in the late 1840’s, and it continued to thrive as a popular source of American themes in fine art prints. By the end of this decade, the union was so successful that subscribers were treated to additional prints and illustrated books. Original paintings by artists such as famed and esteemed American artist Thomas Cole could be won through subscriber lotteries. This engraving, “Marion Crossing the Pedee,” was one of five small folio prints subscribers received in the Union’s final year, 1851. Demand finally overwhelmed supply and by 1852 “The American Art-Union” folded under the weight of postage costs and legal restrictions.

General Francis Marion is undoubtedly the best-known American Revolutionary War hero from the southern colonies and was renowned for his unconventional style of “Guerrilla Warfare” against the British Troops of George III during “The American Revolution”. This engraving is obviously a “nod” to “General Washington Crossing the Delaware” in its style.

The incorrect spelling of the name on the engraving of the “Pee Dee” river, which runs from North Carolina’s Appalachian Mountains through South Carolina, ending in the port of Georgetown, was most likely because the river was spelled “Pedee River” in the American Colonial era. The river was first discovered and navigated in 1521 by Spanish Conquistadors. The lower regions of the river was named after the American Native “Pee Dee” Indian tribe, which inhabited the region.

DIMENSIONS: Image size: Width: 11 7/8″, Height: 7 7/8″.

CONDITION: Very good to excellent. The lower margin has a small trim. The engraving has been professional conserved and de-acidified to museum conservation standards. An excellent impression.

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If you are interested in acquiring this engraving, or if you would like additional information about it, please contact C. Lyman McCallum, Jr. at 1~803~834~3787 or simply email us at chicoraclm@msn.com

 As always, your inquiries are welcomed!