America has produced many notable wood engravers, but Alexander Anderson is one of the first to have name recognition. Born in 1775, he spent his lifetime crafting illustrations for books, periodicals, newspapers, and other commercial ephemera. This delightful digital collection from the New York Public Library brings together sixteen scrapbooks containing almost 10,000 wood engravings by Anderson. Visitors can click on the "Browse Source Titles" area to view the various volumes, and the subjects covered here are quite diverse. Even a cursory search returns dozens of cat engravings, illustrations of slaves, and lottery advertisements. For anyone with an interest in 19th century material culture, this collection is truly wonderful. It is worth making several return trips to get a full sense of the offerings here, and it is one that will bring new rewards upon each visit.
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