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Sep 11 2021

Christian Gobrecht Engraving of Washington Acquired at ANA Convention

Christian Gobrecht (1785-1844),  U.S. Mint Engraver from 1840-1844, worked in a variety of media, as did many of the early Mint engravers. Gobrecht, for example, created three different copperplate engravings of George Washington, one print of which appeared in the Liberty Seated Collectors Club (LSCC) fundraiser auction held during their annual meeting at the recent ANA convention. This version of Washington appeared in J. Kingston’s New American Biographical Dictionary (Baltimore, 1810). This author previously catalogued the copperplate engravings of Christian Gobrecht in Gobrecht Journal #101 (March 2008), available on Newman Portal. 

Only one other copy of this engraving has been located and resides in the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore. The present example is slightly different, with the text beneath the portrait off center. Apparently this text block was loosely attached to the printing plate and shifted in position. The Pratt Library example is correctly aligned. This print sold for $400.25, an odd amount ensured only by the ever-enthusiastic auctioneer Brad Karoleff. Having received a bid of $400, Mr. Karoleff then asked the same bidder for $425. “Four hundred dollars and twenty-five cents” was offered, and, there being no further bids, completed the competition. 

Link to Gobrecht catalog in The Gobrecht Journal, #101: https://nnp.wustl.edu/library/book/176
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