| Description: We offer a fetching original watercolor of Brigadier General William High by Augustus Kollner. It is 11 ¾” x 10” in a cove gilt frame that is 14 ⅝” x 13” and signed by Kollner along the bottom “A. Kollner sect 1842 and 1878, Brigadier General Penn Militia 1842.” Item #FA00144.
Augustus Kollner (1812 -1906) was born in Stuttgart, Germany and immigrated to America in 1839 seeking work as a commercial artist. He established a relationship with P. S. Duval and William Huddy in Philadelphia and his military portraits were frequently published in their periodical “US Military Magazine.” He travelled throughout the Northeast and Canada painting and drawing bustling cities and towns. From these works at least 54 engravings were made into lithographs and published by Goupil, Vibert & Company from 1848 to 1851. A riveting speech made by Governor Andrew Curtain, compelled Kollner to join the Union as a cavalryman, at age 51. Those three months of service inspired a series of drawings that were later reproduced as “Memorials from the Field and other objects designed and from life by A. Kollner.” As he withdrew from commercial art and advertising, he mined his personal archive of artwork for ideas, often repainting scenic views or portraits. He would date the artwork twice, the first year it was made and the year he painted it, as seen in the painting we offer here. Kollner’s work is now appreciated not only for its artistic merit but for his rigorous documentation of Americana. (Source: “Augustus Kollner, Artist”, N.B. Wainwright, Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography, vol.84, issue 3, July, 1960)
General William High (1786- 1851) was a prominent political leader in Pennsylvania. He served as Berks County Commissioner from 1816 to 1819, a member of the State Legislature in 1832. He was one of five delegates from Berks County to the Constitutional Convention in 1828, and was associate judge of Berks County from 1846 to 1851. (Source: Amity Heritage Society)
Condition: Fine condition. Not examined out of frame.