If you guys are anything like Jeff and I, there’s nothing more fun than sorting through stacks of vintage prints. Antique shops are a treasure trove of history, with many of the prints examples of amazing artwork that make a cool, quirky addition for the home.
In particular, we love wildlife prints. Add a crisp white mat and simple black frame, for a classic piece of artwork with a story!
We’ve recently added quite a few prints to the shop from our personal collection of New York State Fisheries, Game and Forest Commission chromolithographs issued in 1902. This collection has a pretty cool history.
Here’s the story.
From 1895 to 1909 The State of New York Fisheries, Game, and Forest Commission produced a yearly report that included full-color chromolithographs of the wildlife present in the state. Most of the fish prints were done by a naturalist called S.F. (Sherman) Denton — these fish prints are well-regarded as prime examples of this type of artwork.
In 1901 the Commission produced a companion ‘portfolio’ of the full-color plates that had been included in each year’s reports and had become very popular with collectors. This portfolio included over 100 chormolithographic prints, most of which are Denton fish prints.
The prints in our shop come from one of those portfolios and as such, all date from 1901 (actually, the print date was 1902.) The prints were packed into a heavy green paper package with gilt printing – here’s ours!
While we’ve already sent many of our prints to new homes, we still have quite a few left. In addition to the Denton fish prints, there’s a nice assortment of other types of wildlife, birds, deer and moose.
We love finding fun ways to display the prints, a shabby ladder, twine and clothespins is one of our favorites. We just restyled to floor of the shop and put the vintage ‘Tow-boggans’ to good use as a display for a few of the prints as well! It’s in the background in the photo below — we love the effect!
Want to know more? Here’s a great collection of information on the artist. Denton Fish Prints.