James Preston. “City Tavern.” [2nd Street above Walnut]. From a set of twelve prints of Philadelphia taverns.
Philadelphia: Robt. Smith Ale Brewing Co., 1909. 11 ¼ x 14 ¼ (image). Color halftone. With false plate mark. Sun-toning to image and text with light mat burn in margins. Repaired tears in margins not affecting image. Else, good condition.
A colorful and lively print from a set of twelve prints depicting Philadelphia taverns, inns, and breweries from ‘days gone by.’ Each image, drawn by James Preston (1873-1962) shows a building in a period street setting. Philadelphia prints are well known for containing scenes of daily city life, and these early twentieth century images carry on that tradition showing the bustling activity in and around these Philadelphia landmarks. Also included on each print is text giving something of the history of the businesses shown. Decorative and of historical interest, this is a delightful series of Philadelphiana.
James Moore Preston studied with Thomas Anshutz at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, in Philadelphia. James Preston and his artist wife, Mary Wilson Preston, were both associated with Robert Henri and the Ashcan School of painters. James Preston was particularly close to William Glackens. Around 1910 or 1911, Henri included both Prestons, as well as George Bellows, in an exhibition of the Eight (Ashcan School) he arranged in New York City.
Other scenes from this series: