The American Revolution Remembered, 1830s to 1850s
The antebellum period was a time of intensive American cultural production during which a genuine American national and cultural identity was produced. The American Revolution was the ‘natural’ starting point for this process of cultural re-imagination. This book investigates the contribution of images about the American Revolution to the formation of an American historical and cultural memory. Visual Representations of American Revolutionary figures and events in popular history paintings, lithographs, pictorial histories, and illustrated magazines from the 1830s to the 1850s have created a visual archive that was seminal in the Americans’ establishment of a “usable past.” As sites of memory, these visuals helped to define the American nation, often stabilizing larger unifying national narratives, but sometimes also contesting historical and cultural memories within the storehouse of visual commemoration.