Lot 484    

Important Revolutionary War Benedict Arnold Woodcut,
2008, Spring Historic Americana, June 5 & 6, 2008
A Representation of the figures exhibited and paraded through the streets of Philadelphia, on Saturday, the 30th of September 1780. Framed and glazed with just under 8" x 12" visible.

Evans [16959] presumes the broadside to be printed by Dunlap in Philadelphia, and his description of it is a bit sketchy, leading some to suggest that he did not have a copy available to him. A few versions seem to have appeared in almanacs of the day. One by Charles Willson Peale appeared as a large folding plate in the 1781 Continental Almanac, but depicted the procession moving from left to right.

The relief cut broadside has a vignette across the top half with Benedict Arnold seated in a wagon. The text below sets the scene: A stage raised on the body of a cart, on which was an effigy of General Arnold sitting; this was dressed in regimentals, had two faces, emblematical of his traiterous conduct, a mask in his left hand, and a letter in his right from Belzebub, telling him that he had done all the mischief he could do, and now he must hang himself. After several more paragraphs to set the scene, The effigy of this ingrate is therefore hanged (for want of his body) as a Traitor to his native country, and Betrayer of the laws of honour. The third column tells the tale in 14 lines of verse.

A rare and important broadside from the Revolution describing an event that lives in the nation's memory to this day.


Condition:  
Splits along several folds, several areas with chips of paper missing, only a couple words affected in the third paragraph of text. Scattered browning. Not removed from frame for examination because paper appears somewhat fragile.
Sold: $9,200.00
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