Bartley Campbell's Siberia A Jewish Massacre


This colored print depicts a town square where soldiers with swords are attacking men, women, and children. Several people are on the ground, dead or injured. At the center of the print is a fountain with a statue of the Virgin Mary. A building emitting smoke and fire with the sign “Café Imperiale” stands on the left side of the square, and on the right another building carries the sign “Café du Peuple.” In the lower left-hand corner are the words “A Jewish Massacre,” indicating this is depicting a scene from the wave of anti-Jewish riots or pograms that swept through Russia during the 1880's and resulted in loss of life as well as emigration to other countries. A Russian Orthodox church with onion domes appears in the background. The drama Siberiafeatured many prominent actors of the day and toured in England, Australia, and New Zealand.

Bartley T. Campbell (1843-1888), was a journalist, novelist, poet, dramatist, and theatrical manager. He was born to Irish immigrant parents in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and began his writing career at age fifteen as a reporter for the Pittsburgh Post. He also worked for newspapers in Louisville, Kentucky, and Cincinnati, Ohio, and founded the Southern Monthly Magazine in New Orleans, Louisiana. After the success of his first melodrama, Through Fire, in 1871, Campbell gave up journalism for playwrighting and experimented with everything from comedies to domestic dramas to military sagas. Several of his works, including The White Slave, focused on racial themes and the plight of mixed-race characters. After an 1876 trip to London, Bartley Campbell began to write the western dramas for which he became especially famous, including The Vigilantes, or, The Heart of the Sierras. He has been described as America's "first fully professional dramatist" (The Oxford Companion to American Theatre),and he also produced and directed plays. Later in life Bartley Campbell suffered from financial and mental problems and died at the State Hospital for the Insane in Middletown, New York. The Galley Slave, became a 1915 film starring Theda Bara.

This chromolithograph was produced by Strobridge Lithographing Company. The Strobridge firm was founded in Cincinnati, Ohio ca 1847 by lithographer Elijah J. Middleton (cited in some sources as Elijah C. Middleton). Middleton was known as one of the pioneers of chromolithography in the United States. By 1854 another lithographer, W. R. Wallace, along with the bookseller Hines Strobridge (1823-1909) had joined the firm as partners. After the Civil War, Strobridge acquired sole ownership of the company and renamed it after himself. Strobridge and Company became especially well known for circus, theater, and movie posters. After leaving the company, Elijah Middleton established a reputation as a portrait publisher, producing prints of George and Martha Washington, Daniel Webster, and other American historical figures.

Date Made: n.d.

Cited: Campbell, BartleyMaker: Strobridge Lithographing Company

Location: Currently not on view

Place Made: United States: Ohio, Cincinnati

Subject: CostumeChildrenMarriageArchitectureTheater


See more items in: Home and Community Life: Domestic Life, Advertising, Art, Peters Prints, Domestic Furnishings


Exhibition Location:

Credit Line: Harry T. Peters "America on Stone" Lithography Collection

Data Source: National Museum of American History

Id Number: DL.60.3020Catalog Number: 60.3020Accession Number: 228146

Object Name: chromolithographObject Type: Chromolithograph

Physical Description: paper (overall material)ink (overall material)Measurements: image: 16 1/2 in x 25 1/2 in; 41.91 cm x 64.77 cm


Record Id: nmah_325289

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