Columbus leaving Spain

woven at the Columbian Exposition, Chicago, 1893

Reference Number:- Sprake Number:- Godden Number:-
st 80 unrecorded 5
 

image st80: words printed on card mount some way below the silk.
 
Image of priest blessing Columbus and his crew in their row boat, with relatives looking on
the image of this silk picture kindly donated by John Hartwig, USA

Words:
Woven on silk:-
COLUMBUS LEAVING SPAIN 

Printed at bottom of card-mount:-
WOVEN IN PURE SILK
AT WORLD'S COLUMBIAN EXPOSITION
CHICAGO 1893

Size:
Card-mount:
17.2cm deep by 25.0cm wide

silk:
6.0cm high by 17.4cm wide

Comments:
by Austin Sprake:
 

by Geoffrey Godden:
This landscape scene shows Christopher Columbus being ferried out in a rowing-boat to the Santa Maria while a priest on the Spanish shore stands, with other figures, giving his blessing to the expedition. The title "Columbus Leaving Spain" is woven in the bottom of the picture, near the left-hand corner. "Landing of Columbus" forms a pair with this one [see st392 on this site].
This historical subject was probably first introduced at the Chicago World's Columbian Exposition in 1893. The very first issues, or those woven at the American exhibition, have only the woven title "Columbus Leaving Spain" [as above]. This hitherto unrecorded and very rare version was soon amended to the standard title "Columbus Leaving Spain 1492" - that is, with the date '1492' added [see st84 on this site].
The early examples made at (or for) the Chicago Exhibition of 1893 are found on two different types of card-mount. The earliest and rarest card-mount (which varies in quality from the standard English card-mounts) may have been made and printed in America; the second standard version links in quality and style of printing with the normal Stevens English mount of the early 1890s.
This subject, with its companion, was first included in label 29+38. It is normally found on card-mounts of type C3 and D4, but is often also found on card-mount E1 or on mounts without any wording. These latter examples are, of course, rather late in period. 

Other comments:
It can be seen that the card mount in the image above is not at all like the normal Stevens card mounts. It has a pitted surface, and the actual words printed on the mount look more like they were imprinted with a rubber hand stamp, and not printed at all.

Whilst the silk remains unchanged, there are a number of different printed words on the card mount. There is the version shown above, and two other versions below:


image st80a: Title words printed on card mount as well as woven on silk, and
"World's Columbian Exposition" words printed on card mount immediately below the silk.

 
same picture of priest blessing Columbus and his crew in their row boat, but with different words printed on the card mount
 
Printed at bottom of card-mount:-
WOVEN IN PURE SILK AT THE WORLD'S COLUMBIAN EXPOSITION, CHICAGO, 1893

COLUMBUS LEAVING SPAIN

AUGUST 3RD. 1492.


image st392b: No title words printed on card mount, only on silk, and
"World's Columbian Exposition" words printed on card mount some way below silk, but also includes credit to STEVENS.

 
same picture of priest blessing Columbus and his crew in their row boat, but with different words printed on the card mount, and credit to Stevens
 
Printed at bottom of card-mount:-
WOVEN IN PURE SILK
AT THE
COLUMBIAN EXPOSITION, CHICAGO 1893
BY THE
STEVENGRAPH WORKS, COVENTRY, ENG.

 


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This page was created on 14 December 2003
new image added 7 May 2006, and replaced 12 November 2014. Images 80a and 80b added 24 October 2017 © Peter Daws
Web site address: www.stevengraph-silks.com