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Illustration Art, New York City, Frederick Elmiger, Construction of the Timber Wall for Wall Street, Vintage Watercolor, c. 1960s


Frederick Elmiger (1890-1975)
Construction of the Timber Wall Across Manhattan (Eventual Site of Wall Street)
American: c. 1960s
Watercolor, gouache and/or acrylic on artist’s board
Signed lower right
22 x 29.75 inches, overall

This is from a series of scenes from New York history — search our site for Elmiger.

Original painting of the construction of a timber and earth stockade wall across Lower Manhattan in 1653, from a series by the artist Frederick Elmiger imagining scenes from New York City’s early history. Elmiger has depicted the Dutch governor, Peter Stuyvesant, who famously had a peg leg, visiting the construction site with other dignitaries as the workers hoist logs into place. Built along the northern boundary of the New Amsterdam settlement, the wall served as protection against attack from Native American tribes, New England colonists and the British. In 1664, the British won control of the territory from the Dutch, and in 1685 surveyors laid out Wall Street along the lines of the original stockade wall, which was demolished in 1699. A typeset label accompanies the painting; apparently these images were exhibited with the labels. It gives a brief account of its history:

In 1653 Peter Stuyvesant and the Council ordered a timber wall or palisade built across Manhattan from river to river to prevent possible invasion of the city. The wall had a water gate at Pearl Street (then the waterfront) and a land gate at Broadway. In 1664 Charles II took the city from the Dutch and it then became New York. This palisade was demolished in 1699 and Wall Street laid out in its place.

Product description continues below.


Frederick Elmiger was an American illustrator. He frequently produced series on historical themes for Donald Art Company in Port Chester, New York, publishers of posters, lithographs, and artists’ prints. These included scenes from American history, Revolutionary war uniforms and vintage automobiles. At the time of his death he was living in Larchmont, New York.

Condition: Generally very good with the usual overall light toning and wear. Outer margins with some glue residue, staining and abrasions from former matting, apparently intended by artist to be matted out as originally issued, and now to be rematted out when reframed. Original title card very good with overall light toning and wear.


“Wall Street.” Wikipedia. 29 April 2007. (30 April 2007).

Additional information


20th Century