September 23, 2017

Featured Image: The first great Western empire

The first great Western empire: or, the United States of America

Clark, Jonathan & Packard, R. “The first great Western empire: or, the United States of America.” 1812. Library of Congress Rare Book and Special Collections Division.
Summary: A patriotic broadside illustrated with emblems of the United States composed chiefly of typographic elements. A large central framework incorporates a small “Temple of Freedom” surmounted by a small Liberty figure, and containing the words “The Federal Constitution.” On each side are oval bust portraits of Presidents (left to right) Washington, Adams, Jefferson, and Madison. Above them are small vignettes representing (on the left) Agriculture and Domestic Manufactures, the “immoveable pillars of the Independence of our country,” and (on the right) Commerce, “a strong support to our national edifice.” In the upper section of the framework are the seal of the United States and a listing of the names of the seventeen states with their 1810 census figures. Various quotations and brief texts are included, the longest of which are an account of George Washington’s resignation of his commission, a description of the geography, government, and people of the United States, and the song “Columbia” written by “Dr. Dwight, President of Yale College.”

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