Bandbox And Lid, Sandy Hook
Block-printed paper on pasteboard support. Gift of Mrs. Frederick F. Thompson. 1913-45-11-a,b
What is this?
Marine view; ships and lighthouse on rolling sea. Printed in pink, white and brown on a blue ground. Legend: Sandy-Hook. Cover, which does not belong to box, has cow and ruins.
Why is this in our collection?
Bandboxes were quite popular during the first half of the 19th century and were used for the storage and transport of men's collar bands, hats, and as general carry-alls. While some bandbox exteriors were covered with wallpaper, most were wrapped with papers made specifically for coverings bandboxes. These papers frequently contained landscape, hunt or mythological scenes. During the 1830s-40s many paeprs were printed with scenes commemorating historic events. They could be rather crudely printed in just a few colors and often show a naiveté found in art.
Sandy Hook has been one of the principle lighthouses on the northeast coast from a very early period. The merchants of New York realized the need to establish a light on this dangerous reef and in 1761 took steps to raise the money by having 2 lotteries authorized by the New York Assembly. The lighthouse was completed and the lamps lit 3 years later. The structure was built of stone and measured 106 feet from the surface of the ground to the top of the lighthouse. During the American Revolution, the Provincial Congress caused the lights to be removed, but during a later period of the war the building was fortified and occupied by the British. The exterior of the lighthouse was retained in its original form but interior improvements made before 1881 included lining the interior with brick and replacing the wooden stairs with iron steps. The lens was of French construction and was 90 feet from the ground.
This object has been included in the following exhibitions: