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GregAlex

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Reply with quote  #1 
Time for a new topic. Much of this information comes from an article I wrote for the Souvenir Card Journal, back in 2011, but it these books are not well known, so I thought it would be interesting to feature them here.

Back in 1864, Congress created the National Statuary Hall in the Capitol, in space formerly occupied by the old House Chamber. Each state was invited to send two statues depicting their most renowned citizens. These statues came in slowly over the years, as new states joined the Union or states submitted them one at a time.

Starting in the 1880s, Congress began publishing the addresses and proceedings from some of the dedication ceremonies of these statues. These books were similar to memorial books for statesmen who died in office, which included engraved portraits by the BEP. Although printed by the Govt. Printing Office, most of these "statue books" had Bureau engravings illustrating the statues.

A total of 12 engravings can be found in a series of 9 books (some states dedicated both their statues at once). All those with BEP vignettes were published between 1884 and 1905. Most of these books are relatively inexpensive, but I suspect they will become harder to find as more collectors learn of them.

I discovered these books after the BEP issued a souvenir card for the 2010 ANA show in Ft. Worth (B-297). It included the statue vignettes of Sam Houston and Stephen Austin from the 1905 Texas book.

Here's a list I've compiled of all the books and some of the vignettes you'll find in them:

"Exercises at the ceremony of unveiling the statue of John Marshall*, chief justice of the United States, in front of the Capitol" - published 1884. 12,550 printed.
*This statue was not commissioned by a state, but by Congress. It sits beside the Capitol steps.

"Addresses on the Acceptance by Congress of the Statue of James A. Garfield, presented by the State of Ohio" - published 1886. 12,000 copies printed.

"Proceeding in Congress upon the Acceptance of the Statue of Lewis Cass, presented by the State of Michigan" - published 1889. No record of copies printed.

"Proceeding in Congress upon the Acceptance of the Statues of Thomas H. Benton and Francis P. Blair, presented by the State of Missouri" - published 1900. 18,470 printed.

"Proceeding in Congress upon the Acceptance of the Statue of Oliver P. Morton, presented by the State of Indiana" - published 1900. 18,494 printed.

"Proceeding in Congress upon the Acceptance of the Statues of John Stark and Daniel Webster, presented by the State of New Hampshire" - published 1900. 18,494 printed.

"Statue of Miss Frances E. Willard erected in Statuary hall of the Capitol building at Washington. Proceedings in the Senate and House of representatives on the occasion of the reception and acceptance of the statue from the state of Illinois" - published 1905. 18,350 printed.

"Statue of Hon. John James Ingalls, erected in Statuary Hall of the Capitol building at Washington. Proceedings in the Senate and House of Representatives on the occasion of the reception and acceptance of the statue from the State of Kansas" - published 1905. 18,350 printed.

"Statues of Sam Houston and Stephen F. Austin, erected in Statuary Hall of the Capitol building at Washington. Proceedings in the Senate and House of representatives on the occasion of the reception and acceptance of the statue from the State of Texas" - 1905. 18,377 printed.

B-297.jpg 
Austin cover.jpg  Cass cover.jpg  Cass interior.jpg  Garfield.jpg 

Marshall.jpg 

Benton.jpg  Stark.jpg  Webster.jpg  Willard.jpg

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mikelaw

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Reply with quote  #2 
Excellent post. Good stuff. Love the vignettes and back stories. Hope you have a few in your collection.
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GregAlex

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Reply with quote  #3 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mikelaw
Excellent post. Good stuff. Love the vignettes and back stories. Hope you have a few in your collection.


I have all nine books. In the process of researching, I decided they were worth getting. The 1886 Garfield book (Ohio) seems to be the hardest one to find.

Here are the other statue vignettes:

Blair.jpg 
Morton.jpg 

Ingalls.jpg 
Cass.jpg 

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mikelaw

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Reply with quote  #4 
Nice. Well done.
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DonEinNY

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Reply with quote  #5 
Nice presentation, Greg.  I didn't know there were 9 of these books.

I have the Frances Willard book and the engraving appears to be printed in gravure rather than intaglio.  Is this true for the other books, as well?  Just wondering.
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GregAlex

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Reply with quote  #6 
The Willard vignette does have a softer look, doesn't it? But I just took a close look at my book and it is definitely a fine line engraving, not photogravure. I think this is intentional. With all the other vignettes that have black "keyhole" backgrounds, these have a sharply defined edge. But Frances has a background that fades out. It's probably not a coincidence that she is the only female depicted.
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DonEinNY

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Reply with quote  #7 
Thanks Greg.  I'll look for these books for my collection.
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