Scarce separately issued map of New York's City Hall and surrounding Commons (City Hall Park) in Lower Manhattan, bounded by Broadway, Chambers Street, Cross Street and Chatham Street. East of City Hall is the old Debtors Jail and what was then called Tryon Row (now called Barrack Street). Within the Tryon Row and Chatham Street parcel is a lot labeled "New York Lombard Co." -- a loan institution chartered in 1824 and also known as New-York Lombard Association. In that same parcel is "Free School” -- referring to New York Free School #1, the city's first public school. Also indicated is the name of lease holder Benjamin Hilton, who is identified as a proprietor of the parcels in city council records in 1811, and as a petitioner in 1829 for lease renewal.
The map was lithographed by Anthony Imbert, a marine painter and lithographer. Imbert was based in New York City and was a pioneering figure in the introduction of the medium of lithography in the United States. Originally a French naval officer, Imbert began painting during a long stint in British prison, instructed, according to his contemporary Archibald Robertson, by one of his fellow prisoners, "a first rate emigrant artist, as a useful as well as agreeable amusement during the tedium of captivity." After arriving in New York, he received a major commission to produce the lithograph plates for Colden's Memoir of the Erie Canal celebrations. His other major project was the lithography for Alexander J. Davis's Views of the Public Buildings in the City of New-York (1826-29). His production ranged over several categories: many other city views, satirical cartoons, genre pictures and sheet music. According to lithography expert Harry Peters, Imbert was likely the first to join two stones together to create a larger surface to print a folding lithograph. He died some time before 1838.
Condition: Generally very good, recently professionally restored -- cleaned and deacidifed, with only minor traces of foxing and toning. Edges a bit worn and slightly irregular. Margins nonetheless very large.
Groce, George C. and Wallace, David H. The New-York Historical Society’s Dictionary of Artists in America 1564-1860. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1969. p. 339.
Peters, Harry T. America on Stone. U.S.: Doubleday, Doran, 1931. pp. 228-235.