Henry Walton, View of Ithaca, Tompkins County, N.Y., Taken from the South Hill 1838, colored lithograph. In this autumn landscape viewed from Prospect Hill, Walton has placed unusual square-rigged ships on Cayuga Lake, reminiscent of the Great Lakes. This detail reflects the planned Sodus Bay Ship Canal from Lake Ontario. The water route would have connected with the Erie Canal and Canandaigua Lake before joining Cayuga Lake, but the plans were never carried out. The proposal also called for the dredging and diking of Ithaca's Cascadilla Creek, forming a bay for shipping and receiving cargo. This lithograph was described favorably and in great detail in the Ithaca Journal at the time. The anonymous writer announced that a second view of our beautiful village, and the romantic scenery by which it is surrounded, has been drawn by and painted by Mr. Henry Walton.
This piece exhibits water damage along the outer frame and spots of lost ink along the bottom of the image. On the upper half of the composition are a series of brown spotted stains. In a grand landscape dominated by an active skyline, the viewer looks out over a sparse agrarian South Hill. From this vantage, one can survey the crowded town of Ithaca and, in the far distance, a sliver of Cayuga Lake. It is this subtle sliver that is touted as the image's raison d'etre, showcasing the success of the Scow's Canal and the ships that could now populate the lakefront. Walton was a noted lithographer for the firm Stone and Clark, of Ithaca. This, like many of Walton's prints, is a delicately drawn composition full of detail that captures life of the time. His palette is marked by rich green and rusty reds. Despite the use of rich colors and intense detail, the work is made to feel breezy and expansive with Walton's generously apportioned sky. 25"X14". Lithograph, colored. Framed. Fair Condition.