This hand-colored lithograph was produced for “Viviparous Quadrupeds of North America,” the Imperial folio edition, published between 1845 and 1848. The work was a field study of North American mammals. It included 150 stone lithographs produced in three volumes of 50 prints per volume. The lithographs were based on watercolor drawings by John James Audubon and after 1846, son John Woodhouse Audubon, who completed the series due to the elder Audubon’s failing eyesight and declining health. Another son, Victor Gifford Audubon, assisted with the drawings backgrounds. The lithographs were printed on non-watermarked heavy white paper and coloring was applied by hand before the prints were bound. Reverend John Bachman was a naturalist of note, as well as John James Audubon’s friend and father of both daughter-in-laws, so he provided the accompanying letterpress narrative. It made the production truly a family affair. The slightly later Octavo edition contained 155 prints of smaller size.
This unbound lithographic plate depicts a hand-colored image of brown sewellel (a short-furred animal with fanged teeth) crouching on boulders beside a lake.
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