The Winterthur Library
The Joseph Downs Collection of Manuscripts and Printed Ephemera
Henry Francis du
5105 Kennett Pike, Winterthur, Delaware 19735
Telephone: 302-888-4600 or 800-448-3883
OVERVIEW OF THE COLLECTION
Creator: Sartain, John, 1808-1897
Acc. No.: [various – see detailed description]
Quantity: 1 box, and 1 folder
Location: 9 C 2
Engraver, portrait and miniature painter John Sartain was born in London in 1808. Left fatherless at the age of eight, Sartain was responsible for the support of his family. At age eleven, he took a job as assistant scene painter to an Italian pyrotechnician working at Charles Kemble’s Theater and at Vauxhall Gardens in London.
In 1823, Sartain
became an apprentice to engraver John Swaine, with whom he worked for seven
years in heraldry and letter engraving.
His work drew the attention of William Young Ottley, an art historian
then writing a book on early
Swaine’s daughter Susannah in 1830 and moved to
engraving, Sartain took up art administration, working for 23 years as director
After finishing his autobiography, The Reminisces of a Very Old Man,
Sartain died in
SCOPE AND CONTENT
This collection contains letters to and from John Sartain, concerning both business and personal matters; prospectuses for his engravings; contracts issued by his son William for engravings; and engravings by Sartain. The engravings primarily depict portraits, and mythical and religious scenes painted by such noted artists as Poussin, Le Brun, Sully, Stuart, and West.
The commonplace books on microfilm (Mic. 2930.1) are attributed to Sartain's
daughters, Emily and Harriet. The
scrapbooks on microfilm are mainly comprised of newspaper clippings that
document activities of
The collection is arranged in the following series: Letters, Prospectuses, Contracts, and Engravings.
LANGUAGE OF MATERIALS
The materials are in English.
RESTRICTIONS ON ACCESS
Collection is open to the public. Copyright restrictions may apply.
Purchased from various sources.
Sartain, Emily, 1841-1927.
Sartain, William, 1843-1924
Art, American – 19th century.
Artists – Correspondence -
Business records -
Magazine illustration – 19th century.
Engraving – Printing - Specimens.
DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE COLLECTION
Location: 9 C 2
77x636 To John Sartain from George R. Birch, Philadelphia, June 9, 1871. Offers sketches made by his father, Thomas Birch.
2017x47a-b to Alfred Andrews, New Britain, Conn., from John Sartain, Philadelphia, Feb. 13, 1875. Mentions engravings of various members of the Hart family, and delay in publication of Andrews’ work. With envelope, endorsed “Sartain about engravings.”
[note: Alfred Andrews published Genealogical History of Deacon Stephen Hart and His Descendants in 1875.]
76x416 To Emily from John Sartain,
68x116.1 To E. Leslie Gilliams from John Sartain,
68x116.2 To E.C. Stedman from John Sartain,
68x83.2 To Mr. Dreer from John Sartain,
73x112a-b To Mr. Willcox from John Sartain,
67x135.1 To J.H. Richardson from John Sartain,
76x414 To Charles G. Leland, 406 Walnut St., from John Sartain, n.d. Sends copy of a plate “Raffaelle and the Fomarina[?]” which is for the March edition of a magazine. Please prepare his article on this as soon as possible.
76x415 To Charles Leland from John Sartain, n.d. Requests location of materials on Puck.
66x127 “Death of the Rev. John Wesley.” “Sartain’s Splendid Engraving from Claxton’s Great Painting.” n.d. Includes small version of the engraving, titled “Deathbed of the Rev. John Wesley.” The engraving was to be furnished by the Methodist Book Establishment, New York.
68x178.2 “J. Sartain’s Magnificent View of Ashland, The Residence of the Late Hon. Henry Clay, Engraved (by Permission) from Hamilton’s Celebrated Picture,--Painted from Daguerreotypes by Hewitt.” Text only. To be published by F. Hegan, Louisville, Kentucky. Addressed to William H.[?] Bliss, April 15, 1833.
71x209.3 “John Knox and Mary Queen of Scots.” Painted by Leutze, Engraved by J. Sartain. May 1, 1848. Engraved for the members of the Philadelphia Art-Union.
99x53 “Death of the Rev. John Wesley.” Another copy of 66x127, above.
74x219 [blank] agrees to pay C. D. Symonds of Boston for a framed steel engraving by Wm. Sartain of “Washington and Family.” n.d.
74x364 Wm. Symonds agrees to pay C. D. Symonds of Boston for a framed steel engraving by Wm. Sartain of “Lincoln & Family.” n.d.
On back: names of M. Barrett of East Gloucester, F.W. Parsons, and George Elwill, with other notes.
69x157.39 “Thomas Chalmers, D.D. & L.L.D.”
69x157.50 “Rev. John B. Gildea.” Original painting by Cha. E. Gebhard
69x157.55 [no title] Autographed “Your Obt. Sevt., Z. Taylor.” “From a sketch made by Capt. Eaton, Aid de Camp, Camargo, Mexico, August 15th, 1846.” “Engraved by J. Sartain, for Grahams Magazine.”
69x157.56 [no title] Autographed by Commodore Wm. Bainbridge. Original portrait by G. Stuart.
69x157.62 “Almira Lincoln Phelps.” “On steel by John Sartain.” Pasted onto same sheet as engravings by H.W. Smith (portrait of man by J.S. Templeton, with illegible signature) and G.E. Perme & Co. (“Egypt and the River Nile” by W.H. Bartlett).
69x157.86 “All-beauteous Lady Arabell.”
76x83.2 “The Flag of the
81x61* “Guttenburg’s [sic] First Experiment in the Art of Printing.” Original by H. Selous. On the broadside “Ledger Carriers” Annual Presentation For the Year 1854.”
[* oversized; in separate folder]
82x199 “Scene on the Delaware.” Original by Shaw. Hand colored.
[note: this passed through the shop of C.W. Unger, whose papers are in Col. 497]
88x215.8 “Little Red Riding hood [sic].” Original by Sir T. Lawrence.
88x215.21 “Major-General Worth.” Autographed by General Worth.
88x215.28 “Charles 1st.” Original by Vandyke.
88x215.50 “A Page from an Olden Chronicle.” Original by N. Compertz.
88x215.53 “Time Clipping the Wings of Love.” Original by Le Brun.
88x215.54 “Esmeralda.” Original by Steuhen.
88x215.56 “The Holy Family.” Original by N. Poussin.
88x215.57 “Christ Blessing the Little Children.” Original by Benjamin West.
88x215.58 “Madeline.” Original by Geo. Jones.
88x215.66 “The Family of Cromwell Interceding for the Life of Charles I.” Original by Alfred Johannot.
88x215.68 “Titus Battering the Walls of
88x215.76 “Christiana and Mercy in the Valley of the Shadow of Death.” Original by Daniel Huntington.
M-2930 Sartain family scrapbooks and untitled books from the Archives of American Art.
Microfilmed records of the
Col. 164, Thomas Sully Papers for six letters from Sully to Sartain. See the Sully finding aid for a full description and location.
John. The Reminisces of a Very Old Man.
Martinez, Anne Katherine. “How to be a Successful Artist in Antebellum America: The Career of John Sartain,” paper for Delaware Seminar, Dec. 1991. Copy of this paper is filed with the paper copy of this finding aid.
RBR NE539 .S34
Sartain’s Union Magazine of Literature and Arts. Volume 7 (1850). RBR AP2 .S34