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Heap & Scull View of Philadelphia, 1754 Large Copy

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Heap & Scull View of Philadelphia, 1754 Large Copy
Item Details
Description
HEAP, George (active 1715-1760) and SCULL, Nicholas (1687-1761).
An East Prospect of the City of Philadelphia: taken by George Heap from the Jersey Shore, Under the Direction of Nicholas Skull, Surveyor of the Province of Pennsylvania.
Engraved by G. Vandergucht. London: Published according to Act of Parliament, 1 September 1754.
Panoramic engraving on 4 folio sheets, each approximately 29 ½" x 23 ½".

A GRAND PROSPECT OF PHILADELPHIA: A FINE COPY OF THE 1754 SCULL-HEAP EAST PROSPECT FIRST STATE, with misspelling "Skull" at top and bottom of sheet 3.Founded in 1680 on a site between the Delaware and the Schuylkill Rivers, Philadelphia was ideally situated for trade and by the mid 18th century, it had become the principal port on the Atlantic coast as well as the commercial and administrative hub of William Penn's province of Pennsylvania. In 1750, Thomas Penn, son of the founder, requested "a perspective view of the city," as a dramatic advertisement to attract more entrepreneurs, merchants and settlers to the city. George Heap, an accomplished local artist, undertook a detailed rendering, from the perspective of the New Jersey side of the Delaware. In 1752, he and the surveyor of the province, Nicholas Scull, advertised for advance subscribers to an engraving after Heap's drawing. But as he was about to sail for London to have his rendering engraved on copper, Heap suddenly died. Scull took over the project and, in London, entrusted the drawing to the highly regarded Flemish-born engraver, Gerard Vandergucht (1696-1766). The completed engraving was on a monumental scale, requiring four large folio sheets, when joined measuring 82 x 20 inches. It accurately depicts the bustling waterfront of Philadelphia, a windmill on an island and many sailing vessels, pennants flying, plying the broad river. The Penn family coat-of-arms is shown at the bottom of sheet 3, along with dedication to proprietors Thomas and Richard Penn. Sheet 4 features a detailed key, identifying streets, the Courthouse, the Statehouse (Independence Hall), a large number of steepled churches and the recently founded Academy (later the University of Pennsylvania). As Martin Snyder has written, "the use of almost seven feet of paper to portray less than a mile of waterfront, from present-day South Street to Vine Street permitted the details that is its great feature." The Scull-Heap print provides a unique view of the city that would become, a few years later, the seat of the Continental Congress and later, the capital of the newly independent nation. The grand image--the largest and most artistically significant view of any American city of its period--proved tremendously popular, and an initial press run of 500 copies was soon followed by a second of 250 copies (these with the corrected "Scull reading). Clearly, as Snyder writes, "the ravages of time upon such a giant and indeed unwieldy picture readily account for its extreme rarity today." The Scull-Heap engraving was not held in many important collections (Thomas W. Streeter, the Hon. J. William Middendorf, Laird Park, Pflaumer, Jay T. Snider) and we have located only six copies in American institutions: Colonial Williamsburg; Historical Society of Pennsylvania (2 copies, one in poor condition); Independence National Historic Park; New York Pub.Condition: Each sheet with old horizontal crease approximately 9 inches from top edge, small losses to sky area unobtrusively mended, the crease neatly reinforced from verso with archival tissue; each with small triangular patches of discoloration in margins (from early mount). Other light, mostly marginal browning or light patches (not affecting images). Sheet 1: ample margins at left, top and bottom, right side trimmed to platemark in upper portion; upper right edge reinforced from verso with archival tissue; Sheet 2: ample margins at left, top and bottom, right side trimmed to within platemark; Sheet 3: ample margins at left, top and bottom, right side trimmed to platemark in lower half; lower right edge reinforced from verso with archival tissue; Sheet 4: ample margins at right, top and bottom, left side trimmed at or just outside platemark; right edge reinforced from verso with archival tissue.
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Heap & Scull View of Philadelphia, 1754 Large Copy

Estimate $700,000 - $900,000
Oct 10, 2020
See Sold Price
Starting Price $600,000
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0141: Heap & Scull View of Philadelphia, 1754 Large Copy

Sold for $775,000
8 Bids
Est. $700,000 - $900,000Starting Price $600,000
Arader Galleries October 10th Auction
Oct 10, 2020 1:00 PM EDT
Buyer's Premium 23%

Lot 0141 Details

Description
...
HEAP, George (active 1715-1760) and SCULL, Nicholas (1687-1761).
An East Prospect of the City of Philadelphia: taken by George Heap from the Jersey Shore, Under the Direction of Nicholas Skull, Surveyor of the Province of Pennsylvania.
Engraved by G. Vandergucht. London: Published according to Act of Parliament, 1 September 1754.
Panoramic engraving on 4 folio sheets, each approximately 29 ½" x 23 ½".

A GRAND PROSPECT OF PHILADELPHIA: A FINE COPY OF THE 1754 SCULL-HEAP EAST PROSPECT FIRST STATE, with misspelling "Skull" at top and bottom of sheet 3.Founded in 1680 on a site between the Delaware and the Schuylkill Rivers, Philadelphia was ideally situated for trade and by the mid 18th century, it had become the principal port on the Atlantic coast as well as the commercial and administrative hub of William Penn's province of Pennsylvania. In 1750, Thomas Penn, son of the founder, requested "a perspective view of the city," as a dramatic advertisement to attract more entrepreneurs, merchants and settlers to the city. George Heap, an accomplished local artist, undertook a detailed rendering, from the perspective of the New Jersey side of the Delaware. In 1752, he and the surveyor of the province, Nicholas Scull, advertised for advance subscribers to an engraving after Heap's drawing. But as he was about to sail for London to have his rendering engraved on copper, Heap suddenly died. Scull took over the project and, in London, entrusted the drawing to the highly regarded Flemish-born engraver, Gerard Vandergucht (1696-1766). The completed engraving was on a monumental scale, requiring four large folio sheets, when joined measuring 82 x 20 inches. It accurately depicts the bustling waterfront of Philadelphia, a windmill on an island and many sailing vessels, pennants flying, plying the broad river. The Penn family coat-of-arms is shown at the bottom of sheet 3, along with dedication to proprietors Thomas and Richard Penn. Sheet 4 features a detailed key, identifying streets, the Courthouse, the Statehouse (Independence Hall), a large number of steepled churches and the recently founded Academy (later the University of Pennsylvania). As Martin Snyder has written, "the use of almost seven feet of paper to portray less than a mile of waterfront, from present-day South Street to Vine Street permitted the details that is its great feature." The Scull-Heap print provides a unique view of the city that would become, a few years later, the seat of the Continental Congress and later, the capital of the newly independent nation. The grand image--the largest and most artistically significant view of any American city of its period--proved tremendously popular, and an initial press run of 500 copies was soon followed by a second of 250 copies (these with the corrected "Scull reading). Clearly, as Snyder writes, "the ravages of time upon such a giant and indeed unwieldy picture readily account for its extreme rarity today." The Scull-Heap engraving was not held in many important collections (Thomas W. Streeter, the Hon. J. William Middendorf, Laird Park, Pflaumer, Jay T. Snider) and we have located only six copies in American institutions: Colonial Williamsburg; Historical Society of Pennsylvania (2 copies, one in poor condition); Independence National Historic Park; New York Pub.Condition: Each sheet with old horizontal crease approximately 9 inches from top edge, small losses to sky area unobtrusively mended, the crease neatly reinforced from verso with archival tissue; each with small triangular patches of discoloration in margins (from early mount). Other light, mostly marginal browning or light patches (not affecting images). Sheet 1: ample margins at left, top and bottom, right side trimmed to platemark in upper portion; upper right edge reinforced from verso with archival tissue; Sheet 2: ample margins at left, top and bottom, right side trimmed to within platemark; Sheet 3: ample margins at left, top and bottom, right side trimmed to platemark in lower half; lower right edge reinforced from verso with archival tissue; Sheet 4: ample margins at right, top and bottom, left side trimmed at or just outside platemark; right edge reinforced from verso with archival tissue.

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