Printing Plate

Printing Plate

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Vertical rectangular printing plate for a trade card for "LEONARD ALTEMUS: / Taylor / 83 / NORTH third STREET / PHILADELPHIA"; engraved in reverse. Top half of design depicts Liberty seated at left next to a shield blazoned with the coat of arms of Pennsylvania and surrounded by commercial and agricultural goods; she holds a liberty pole in her right hand and points her left to an American eagle with banner "Let an American Honour merit! Wherever it be Found" in its beak that hovers amidst clouds above a three-masted barque sailing towards a sun with face on the horizon; broken tree stump at right. Tradesman's name, address and product advertisment in oval below. Signed at bottom center "Bower". Plate reverse stamped incuse "J\B/. KEIM / PHIL\A/." in roman letters.
Leonard Altemus (1763-1826) worked for several years as a tailor at 64 Sassafras before appearing in the 1811 directory at 83 N. Third Street; two years later, he is listed as a tavern keeper on Filbert Street. Jacob Keim is listed in Philadelphia directories from 1809 to 1845 as a steel and copperplate maker, while engraver John Bower worked in Philadelphia, 1809-1819.
Currently not on view
Object Name
printing plate
trade card
Object Type
Other Terms
Plate; Engraving
date made
ca 1811
associated person
Altemus, Leonard
place made
United States: Pennsylvania, Philadelphia
Physical Description
copper (overall material)
overall, plate wrapped in print: 1/2 in x 5 3/4 in x 3 7/8 in; 1.27 cm x 14.605 cm x 9.8425 cm
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
See more items in
Cultural and Community Life: Domestic Life
Domestic Furnishings
Data Source
National Museum of American History
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