PALMER, F. F. (1812-1876)
[CURRIER & IVES pub] Quail Shooting. Setters Property of S. Palmer, Esq. Brooklyn, L. I.
New York: N. Currier, 1852. Hand-colored lithograph by Frances Palmer after her own painting. Image size (including text): 14 3/4 x 21 1/4" (sight). Bird's-eye maple, gold liner, French mat. 28 1/4 x 33 3/4"
Provenance: Donaldson, Lufkin &Jenrette Americana Collection
Classic Nathaniel Currier hunting print by Fanny Palmer
The location of this scene is thought to be the Meadow Park in Queens, N. Y. The dogs belonged to Fanny Palmer's husband, Samuel, and were her source for portraits of pointers and retrievers in many hunting scenes.
Fanny Palmer (1812-1876) was the first woman in the United States to work as a professional artist, and to make a living with her art. She produced more Currier and Ives' prints than any other artist, and she was the only female in a business dominated by men. Painting was not considered a suitable occupation for a woman, nor, of course, was lithography. Hers was a story common for many Victorian wives, who were expected to keep house and be supported by their husbands. She however pursued a career in printmaking in England and eventually in America, virtually supporting her family as her husband sank deeper into alcoholism and then supporting it in fact when he fell to his death on a hotel stairway in 1857.
Her shooting prints show a fine understanding of the appeal the sport had for men with their dogs, shotguns and hunting attire, walking through untamed country with a friend on a summer afternoon.