SIGNING of the DECLARATION of INDEPENDENCE July 4th, 1776

(woven at World's Columbian Exposition, Chicago, 1893)

Reference Number:- Sprake Number:- Godden Number:-
st 532 STG147a 58a
 

wording hand printed on card mount.
Picture of Declaration being Signed
 
slightly different wording hand printed on card mount.
Picture of Declaration being Signed
the image of this silk picture kindly donated by John Hartwig, USA

Words:
Woven on silk:-
DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE
JULY 4th 1776 

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

Size:
Card-mount:
cm deep by cm wide

silk:
6 cm high by 18 cm wide

Comments:
by Austin Sprake:
"Declaration of Independence July 4th 1776" woven into the silk. Often the additional title "The Signing of the Declaration of Independence July 4th 1776" is printed on the mount, sometimes with the "Woven in pure silk at the World's Columbian Exposition Chicago 1893" identification as other silks [as above].
Note: The picture is almost certainly copied from a painting by Turnbull in The Capitol, Washington, showing the presentation of the Declaration of Independence to the Congress of the American Colonies at the Pennsylvanian State House. 

by Geoffrey Godden:
This historical landscape picture has the short title DELARATION OF INDEPENDENCE, JULY 4th, 1776 woven in near the bottom left-hand corner of the picture, and also normally repeated on the card-mount.
The title was first included on label 29+38 of 1893 and the picture was probably first introduced at the 1893 Chicago Exhibition, for the early examples may be found with the special wording 'Woven in pure silk at the World's Columbian Exposition, Chicago, 1893' [as above] - wording which was not included on the card-mounts of post-1893 specimens.
The early examples were affixed to type C1 or type C4 card-mounts. Later examples will be found on type E mounts. All specimens of this subject are rare and can have commanded little sale to British customers of the period.

Other comments:
It would seem that visitors to the Exposition were able to buy un-mounted copies of the picture silk, and have them attached to stiff backing paper with metal pins as if they were bookmarks.
Below are two images of these " loose " silk pictures. Of particular interest though is the wording printed on the respective backing papers:

SOUVENIR
OF
Discovery of America
AND
World's Columbian
EXPOSITION
Woven in Pure Silk
 
Image of the Signing of the Declaration of Independence

From an analysis of bookmark stiff backing papers, members of The Stevengraph Collectors Association concluded that silks with the printing of " Souvenir OF . . . " had probably been made by Mannion, so this loose ribbon is attributed to his manufacture.


 
 SOUVENIR
 Woven at the
 World's Columbian
 EXPOSITION
 1893
 BY THOMAS STEVENS
 Coventry, Eng.
 INVENTOR AND MANUFACTURER OF
 Pure Silk Woven Book Marks
 
Image of the Signing of the Declaration of Independence

As can be seen, whilst the actual woven silk is identical, the printed words on the backing paper attribute this silk to STEVENS.

 


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This page was created on 1 February 2000
New image added 27 March 2004, and additional image with slightly different wording added 10 November 2014
Mannion loose silk version added 9 April 2020, and Stevens loose silk version added 19 August 2020 © Peter Daws
Web site address: www.stevengraph-silks.com