Axel L. Klinkowstrom, after Thomas Birch. "Bro öfver Skuylkill strömmen nära Philadelphia." [Bridge over the Schuylkill River near Philadelphia]. From Atlas til Friherre Klinkowstroms Bref om de Forenta Staterne.
Stockholm: Tryckeriet, 1824. 9 3/4 x 16 1/2 (image). Aquatint by Carl Fredrik Akrell. Hand color. Framed.
Baron Axel Klinkowstrom spent three years, from 1818 to 1820, in the United States as the emissary for Sweden. On his tours around the country, the Baron took copious notes and made many sketches. Upon his return to Sweden he issued a fascinating account of his travels, which was issued with an accompanying atlas that included nineteen views of New York, Washington and Philadelphia. The subject of this view is the Upper Ferry or Fairmount Bridge, a covered bridge over the Schuylkill River at Fairmount. It was built between 1809 and 1812, made entirely of wood and spanned a distance of 340 feet. Until it was destroyed by fire in 1838 the bridge was a Philadelphia landmark, both for its fine appearance and as an engineering feat. The scene is drawn from the eastern bank of the river near present day Philadelphia Museum of Art. Fairmount itself is not depicted, though the beginning of the slope is shown at right. Klinkowstrom's view is closely derived from Thomas Birch's image of the same site from a few years before.