Graphic Arts | Rare Books and Special Collections | Princeton University Library
Unseen Hands: Women Printers, Binders and Book Designers    
      thumbnail gallery   Name   Occupation   Timeline  


Frances Flora Bond (Fanny) Palmer
British, 1812-1876

"It is likely that during the latter half of the nineteenth century more pictures by Mrs. Fanny Palmer decorated the homes of ordinary Americans than those of any other artist, dead or alive," wrote Ewell L. Newman, a Currier & Ives specialist. In addition, her work has probably appeared on millions of books, calendars, and greeting cards depicting the idyllic world of these quintessentially American printmakers. Yet she has been largely ignored by historians, even when they discuss her best-known work, Across the Continent, Westward the Course of Empire Takes its Way, a popular print extolling the idea of American progress. It is estimated she drew over 200 scenes for Currier & Ives, but she did not always sign her work; when she did she usually identified herself only as F. F. Palmer. Sometimes, as in this example, she makes it clear that she was responsible for both the original artwork and the print: "From Nature and On [Lithographic] Stone by F. F. Palmer."

Trout Fishing, by Fanny Palmer

Trout Fishing
Color lithograph
New York: Published by N. Currier, 1852
Graphic Arts Division


Princeton University Library, Graphic Arts Collection
Rebecca W. Davidson, Curator of Graphic Arts
Tel: (609) 258-3197
Last Modified: February 13, 2004