San Francisco: Edward Bosqui & Co., . First edition. Single sheet 19.5 x 14 inches, "oleograph" (chromolithograph) color print. Publisher imprint just barely discernable at bottom left of sheet "Edward Bosqui & Co. San Francisco” and at lower right the printed text "Original by Hannah Millard." Framed and glazed in old (contemporary ?) mat and wooden frame. The frame is backed with single piece of redwood measuring 19.75 x 15.75 by about 1/8 inches. Print has been conserved and remounted with acid-free matboard between original possibly acidic materials and print. Mat burn to margins, stains at top and bottom of sheet from old adhesive, moderate toning to image, still overall quite clean and presentable. Item #22237
An exquisite example from the series of 10 chromolithograph grape prints published in San Francisco in 1877 by Edward Bosqui & Co. as “Grapes and Grape Vines of California.” The work was commissioned by the California Vinicultural Association and published in serial parts, each part issued with 2 plates and 1 or 2 pages of descriptive text for each plate. The grapes depicted in the series were selected at vineyards around Northern California, the present example from a vineyard “on the Western slope of Mount Bache, in the Santa Cruz Mountains,” and painted in watercolors by Hannah Millard. The watercolors were rendered as “oleographs” (chromolithographs), by Bosqui’s lithographer William Harring, who had come to San Francisco from the Boston firm of Louis Prang, where he had been chief chromolithographer. The quality of the color printing achieved by Harring was widely acclaimed at the time. An article in the April, 1880 number of the “Pacific Printer” trade journal (reprinted in “The Memoirs of Edward Bosqui” Oakland, Holmes Book Co., 1952) proclaimed of “Grapes and Grape Vines of California”: “. . . probably no work ever published in this country has called forth such unqualified expressions of approval, both at home and abroad as this work." This one INSCRIBED BY EDWARD BOSQUI in pencil at lower right corner within image area: "To C. C. Coleman / With Compliments of EB." Inscribee is possibly Carleton Chinn Coleman (1856-?) son of William T. Coleman (1824-1893). The elder Coleman was, like Bosqui, a forty-niner who became an integral figure in the world of commerce and politics in early San Francisco. He developed a successful shipping line and his W. T. Coleman and Co. commission business was the largest in San Francisco. He was also President of the 1856 San Francisco Committee of Vigilance. Carleton C. Coleman (the only "Coleman" with these initials appearing in the San Francisco city directories from 1878-1893) was employed at his father's firm continuously during those years, except for 1881 when he is listed in the city directory as emplyoyed by James, Pariser & Co. - a factory producing candied fruit. Apparently the series was not well subscribed as few sets are known to exist. Library holdings number 13, not all complete, and neither sets nor the individual plates appear regularly in commerce. NB: This same grape print was also issued with the Bosqui copyright notice printed within the shaded image area along with the caption "California Burgundy" and with "Compliments of Italian Swiss Colony. Asti, Cal." printed below. Since Italian Swiss Colony's first vintage was not until 1887 that issue would seem to be either later or an overprinting of the added text to remaining stock from the original 1877 printing.