Christmas in Virginia A present from the great house Single sheet, original woodcut by W.L. Sheppard Sheet measures 16” X 11”, As shown.
Begun in the panic year of 1857, Harpers Weekly built up a vast circulation during the Civil War and became a powerful organ of public opinion. This enviable position of editorial influence was maintained until the 1920’s when it succumbed to the competition of the Sunday newspaper supplements.
The Triumph of the Weekly was its artists—men like Thomas Nast, Winslow Homer, C. A. Reinhart, E. A. Abbey, Frederick Remington, A. R. Waud, T. R. Davis, and their compeers—who contributed so much to journalistic illustration.
Up until the last years of the 19th century their pictures were either drawn directly on or transferred to blocks of boxwood. Skilled engravers would cut away all the wooden surface not covered by lines of the drawing. The printing was then done in relief directly from the resulting blocks. In order to accomplish this lengthy process speedily enough to issue the paper once a week, a large staff of engravers was employed. Full page and double page illustrations were divided into sections, each of which might be engraved by a different man. Then the sections were locked together in a form from which the entire picture was printed as a unit. The joints between the various component blocks can be seen quite clearly in many of the prints.
top of page
bottom of page