Jewels in Her Crown: Treasures of Columbia University Libraries Special Collections

Exhibition Themes > New York City History > 41. Archibald Robertson

41.  Archibald Robertson.  New York from Long Island. Ink and color wash on paper, (43.8 cm. x 62.2 cm.), ca. 1795. Office of Art Properties

Immigrating from Scotland in 1791, Robertson set up practice in New York City as a miniaturist. In addition, he also made numerous landscapes and city views. Together with William and Thomas Birch, who worked in Philadelphia, he helped to introduce the English topographical watercolor tradition in the United States. This view across the East River to Manhattan, depicting an expansive landscape, stems from that tradition. The building at the right is George Washington's headquarters. The location is identified in an inscription across the bottom of the sheet.

Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan

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