A rare view of Boston’s Quincy Market

A[lexander] J[ackson] Davis / Lith. of Pendleton, QUINCY HALL MARKET. BOSTON. New York, [ca. 1829-1830?]
Lithograph, 9.25"h x 15.25"w plus title and wide margins, uncolored

An early, lovely and apparently extremely rare view of Quincy Market, built in 1824-26 to accommodate the overflow from Faneuil Hall.

The view was drawn by Alexander Jackson Davis (1803-1892), a successful architect and leading proponent of the Greek Revival style. Before turning to architecture, Davis began his career as a watercolorist and lithographer in New York, though he spent an important stretch in Boston:

“To further his architectural studies, Davis spent the winters of 1827 and 1828 in Boston. He divided his time between studying architecture at the Boston Athenaeum and drawing the local buildings. While in Boston, Davis drew on stone for William and John Pendleton. He completed more than twenty-five lithographs of buildings and monuments, for which the Pendletons paid him a total of $225.00. Most celebrated among these is his view of the Boston State House, which was drawn to scale from actual measurements. Davis exhibited several of his Boston lithographs at the National Academy of Design in 1828 and 1829.” (Pierce and Slautterback, Boston Lithography, p. 169)

John and William Pendleton are best known for establishing Boston’s first lithographic firm. They parted ways in 1829, with John moving to New York and opening his own lithographic operation, which remained active through 1834. The view is not dated, but given the timing of Davis’ stay in Boston it probably dates to 1829-1830.

OCLC #57745737, giving but a single example at the Boston Athenaeum. Another example located at the Boston Public Library.


Just a hint of sunning to image, else excellent