View on the Wisahiccon, Pennsylvania


View on the Wisahiccon, Pennsylvania


John Hill
American, b. England, 1770–1850
After Joshua Shaw
American, b. England, c. 1777–1860
Published in 1820 by M. Carey & Son, Philadelphia.


From Picturesque Views of American Scenery.

This aquatint is one of twenty hand-colored prints that were engraved by John Hill after drawings by Joshua Shaw. They appeared in groups, or numbers, that were published in sequence under the title Picturesque Views of American Scenery by Matthew Carey & Son during the first few months of 1820. View on the Wisahiccon (as the name of the creek was spelled in the early years of the nineteenth century) was issued as part of the Second Number, together with five other aquatinted views.

Born in London, John Hill was already well versed in the aquatint technique when he came to the United States in 1816. Aquatint provides a wide range of tonal possibilities, making it ideal for improving a sense of chiaroscuro to an etched plate. Because the intricacies of the medium were little understood on this side of the Atlantic, his services were in high demand from publishers in need of reproductive illustrations, so much so that he was largely responsible for ushering in something akin to a golden age of aquatint engraving in this country during the 1820s and 1830s.

Adapted from the entry written by Judith Hansen O’Toole for the 1980 Pennsylvania Prints exhibition catalogue.


Palmer Museum of Art, The Pennsylvania State University, Partial gift and purchase from John C. O’Connor and Ralph M. Yeager




John C. O'Connor and Ralph M. Yeager Collection, Palmer Museum of Art, The Pennsylvania State University


This image is posted publicly for non-profit educational uses, excluding printed publication. Other uses are not permitted.


Aquatint and etching with hand coloring, first state of two; 14-7/16 x 20-5/8 in. (36.7 x 52.4 cm)


United States, Pennsylvania