Alexander Wilson American Ornithology Copper Plate Engravings 1829

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Roseate Spoonbill, American Avocet
AWO104 $
Ivory Billed Woodpecker EXTINCT
AWO100 $
Hooping Crane, Louisiana Heron
AWO105 $695
Mississippi Kite, Tennesee Warbler, Kentucky Warbler
AWO112 $525
Ring-tailed Eagle, Sea Eagle
AWO113 $595
Broad-winged Hawk, Chuck-wills-widow
AWO114 $525
Red-tailed Hawk, American Buzzard
AWO115 $525
Baltimore Oriole, Black Hawk, Red Shouldered Hawk
AWO116 $525
Sharp shinned Hawk, Redstart, Yellow Rump
AWO117 $
Louisiana Tanger, Clark's Crow, Lewis's Woodpecker
AWO121 $
AWO118 $
Cardinal Grosbeak, Red Tanager
AWO122 $
Blue Jay, Goldfinch,
Baltimore Oriole
AWO124 $595
American Siskin, Rose-breasted Grosbeak
Belted Kingfisher, Warblers, Water Thrush
AWO126 $595
American Sparrow Hawk, Field Sparrow, Snow Bird
AWO130 $475
Winter Falcon, Magpie, Crow
AWO131 $475
Carolina Cuckoo, Yellow Redpoll
AWO127 $395
Great American Shrike, Pine Grosbeak, Shore Lark
AWO133 $295
Slate-coloured Hawk, Ground Dove
AWO150 $225
Orchard Oriole
AWO135 $350
Brown Thrush, Cat Bird, Warblers
AWO136 $325
American Crossbill, Whitewinged Crossbill
AWO137 $350
Wood Thrush, Robin, Nuthatch
Chimney Swallow, Purple Martin, Connecticut Warbler
AWO139 $325
Hummingbirds, Mockingbird, Towhe Bunting
AWO140 $525
Barn Swallow, White-bellied Swallow
AWO141 $345
Tyrant Flycatcher, Wood Pewee
AWO142 $345
Great Carolina Wren, Rice Bunting, March Wren
AWO143 $345
Loggerhead Shrike, Swamp Sparrow, Savannah Sparrow
AWO144 $325
Canada Jay, Snow Bunting, Rusty Grackle
AWO145 $350
Pinneated Grous, Nashville Warbler
AWO146 $375
Turtle Dove, Hermit Thrush
AWO147 $345
Brown Creeper, House Wren, Crested Titmouse
AWO151 $245
Turkey Buzzard, Raven
AWO152 $245
Maryland Yellow-throat, Cow Bunting
AWO153 $245
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Alexander Wilson American Ornithology Copper Plate Engravings 1829

Alexander Wilson was born in Scotland, the son of a poor distiller, and was apprenticed as a weaver. An imaginative youth, his first love was poetry, and he soon renounced his humdrum life for the lure of adventure and prosperity in the new world. Arriving in America in 1794, he settled near the cultural mecca of the day, Philadelphia, finding work as a teacher. He met William Bartram, the American naturalist and artist, who encouraged Wilson’s interest in ornithology. So inspired, Wilson taught himself to draw and embarked on the work that was not only to take the rest of his life, but also predated Audubon’s Birds of America.

Wilson spent ten years of his life traveling widely in the eastern United States, discovering 26 previously unknown species. In the next hundred years, only 23 more American land birds would be identified. The first edition of American Ornithology was printed from 1808-1814 and was an outstanding contribution to the world of ornithology as the first work on American birds, printed in America. Sadly, Wilson died in 1813 before the completion of the publication and it was completed by George Ord.

This first edition was published on a poor-quality paper due to financial constraints. Fifteen years later, due to the success of the work, the financing was available to publish an edition on high quality paper with superior hand coloring. The same copper plates were used, so the edition is identical from the perspective of the images and the historical significance of the work, with the added benefit of being highly decorative due to the superior hand coloring.

It is from this 1829 edition that we are pleased to offer a wonderful selection of all the important birds of America. The paper is high quality, thick-wove stock with very few blemishes of any kind, measuring approximately 11 1/4 wide by 14 1/4 inches long, with good plate marks. The original hand coloring is breathtakingly beautiful. These prints are truly a rare treasure, much more so than Audubon prints, and worthy of the pride of place in any print lovers collection.

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