Robert Salmon (c.1755-1845) Oil on panel, titled 'Leith Harbor', signed in red with initials 'R.S.' and dated 1833 in the lower right and painted in Boston. This magnificent painting depicts the shoreline of Leith Harbor with a row of brick buildings lining the wharf. At the center there is a bridge leading across the harbor with some large public buildings. Behind the bridge is a sea of masts. Close to shore is a paddlewheel steamer filled with passengers. There are several figures on shore helping to bring the steamer along side the wharf. To the right there is a ship sailing into the harbor in light wind. The ship is painted in magnificent detail. The rigging, spars and sails are rendered with Salmon's typical painstaking attention to detail. In the right corner is a sailing dory with a few figures. The standing figure is wearing a red shirt, and element often used by Salmon which was then picked up by Fitz Henry Lane. There are several other sailing vessels of various sizes in the harbor. The water is painted in Salmon's standard stylized water with bands of dark and light moving from the foreground to the horizon. This harbor scene by Robert Salmon is one of the more active, detailed and brightly painted Salmon's, we have examined. (PA-824)
Condition of painting: The painting was cradled some years ago and shows no warpage or cracking. There is scattered small dot in-paint in the sky and water. There is additioinal in-painting around the dory in the right foreground.
Condition of frame: The painting has a late nineteenth century gold leaf frame which was added to the painting at some point. Reference: Wilmerding, John, 'Robert Salmon Painter of Ship & Shore', Salem and Boston: Peabody Museum of Salem and Boston Public Library, 1971, p. 94. This painting is described along the bottom right of this page in 'Salmon's Catalogue of Paintings' as 'No. 812.' The listing states: 24 by 16 about 6 day, Leith Harbour, Scotland, second time. Solld Auction Boston 1835 $ 37. Provenance: Eliot W. Dalton, Essex, Massachusetts Catalogue - AMERICAN 18TH & 20th CENTURY PAINTINGS, DRAWINGS, WATERCOLORS & SCULPTURE April 29, 1976 Sotheby Parke Bernet Inc. New York Lot 3 Private Collection, Connecticut
Dimensions of frame: 21 3/4 31 1/8inches.
Dimensions of painting: 16 x 25 3/4 inches