The small watercolor (at left) depicts the Stone Tower in a pastoral setting. While this picture is not an accurate representation of any point in history, the Tower is, in fact, on a hill that, before Newport was built up in colonial times, overlooked fields and the waters of Narragansett Bay. The original image is 2 1/4" x 4 15/16" and is undated and unsigned.  


Collection of Redwood Library.

Engraving (at left) of the "Old Tower at Newport" by Benson J. Lossing and William Barritt. It is reproduced in The Pictorial Field-book of The Revolution by Lossing, published in 1852.
Illustration from “Newport: Historical and Social,” Harper’s New Monthly Magazine, vol. 9, no. 51 (August 1854), 315. The engraving was originally printed in Newport Illustrated, written by George C. Mason in 1854, and published for him and for Whitney, Jocelyn & Annin, engravers. Mason wrote the text as well as made all 26 drawings for the book. Twenty-two of them were purchased by Harper & Brothers and used in the August, 1854, issue of their magazine. Although Mason drew the series of views of Newport and its environs (including the Old Stone Mill) on stone, the initials in the engraving above appear to be D.C.H., perhaps the signature of DeWitt C. Hitchcock, an illustrator, engraver, and landscapist who worked in Boston, Cincinnati, and New York City from 1845-79.

W. H. Rau (1855-1920)


William Herman Rau was a commercial photographer and the producer of stereograph cards. His work is represented in the collections of the Stowe Day Foundation (Hartford, CT); the Yale University Art Gallery (New Haven, CT); the Print Department of the Boston Public Library; the International Museum of Photography at the George Eastman House (Rochester, NY); the Visual Studies Workshop Research Center (Rochester); the Alfred Stieglitz Center at the Philadelphia Museum of Art; and the National Museum of American Art, Smithsonian Institution (Washington, DC).


The image is 6" x 8 1/4" and is from the collection of James Baker.


Frederick Catherwood.  "Ancient Structure in Newport, Rhode-Island, The Vinland of the Scandinavians." ca. 1836-39. A comparison of the two images (at left and below) with the other images in this section reveals inaccuracies in Catherwood's renderings. For more information, see Norse Theory.
Frederick Catherwood.  "Ancient Structure [interior view] in Newport, Rhode-Island, The Vinland of the Scandinavians." ca. 1836-39.  For more information see Norse Theory.

"Cheapest Newport Season"  

Cartoon by Frederick  Burr Opper (1857-1937)


Opper worked as a cartoonist, artist, and illustrator for various newspapers and magazines, including The New York Journal, Puck,  and Frank Leslie's. Famous for his political cartoons and comic strips, he also illustrated a number of humorous books. The cartoon at left is from Bill Nye's History of the United States (Chicago; Thompson & Thompson, 1894).  


From the collection of John Dandola.

Panoramic Postcard - folds out to 3 1/2 x 11"  

Copyright 1906 by Blanchard, Young, & Co., Providence, R.I., U.S.A.  

From the collection of John Dandola

Edith Ballinger Price (1897-1997)  


Edith Ballinger Price, an illustrator, painter, and writer, who died in Virginia on September 29, 1997, was born April 26, 1897. The daughter of William F. and Eleanor R. Richards Price and the granddaughter of the well-known 19th-century American artist William Trost Richards, she lived most of her life in Newport, a place she always considered home. She wrote to Linda Gordon, associate editor of Redwood's newsletter &c., in 1989, "I feel as though I have been away from Home a long time…. Among all the Newport changes, I’m glad the Redwood stands firm." She was a Redwood shareholder from 1956 until her departure from Newport in 1962.  


Miss Price described her pen-and-ink drawing (at left) of 1929 as "one of a series of historic Newport post cards that I did back in the ‘20s and ‘30s. I called them ‘Histori-cards’ – they were quite popular, and sold well. Never thinking that they might become as popular as they did, I carelessly neglected to copyright them – and in the quarter century that has passed since I left Newport, some of them were pirated in various ways, without my knowledge or sanction (my fault)." Several of these drawings were shown in the "Tercentenary Exhibition: The History of Newport in Pictures" at the Art Association of Newport in 1939. Fascinated with Newport’s history, Miss Price lectured about and worked for the preservation of the city’s colonial architecture, while celebrating it in her art work.


Collection of Redwood Library.

Touro Park

Helena Sturtevant (1872-1947)  


A Rhode Island native, Helena Sturtevant was a graduate of the school of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston and studied under Blanche and Lucien Simon at the Colarossi Academy in Paris. Her work was influenced by the Impressionists and was exhibited both in Paris and at a number of American sites. She was one of the founders of the Newport Art Association (now the Newport Art Museum). Beginning in 1912, with a group of local intellectuals and fellow artists, she started the Art Association and directed its art school for close to 35 years. In addition, from the early 1900s until her death, Sturtevant painted numerous views of Aquidneck Island, including Touro Park and (at left) the Old Stone Mill. In 1941 the Art Association devoted an exhibition to her work. In 1942 a group associated with the Newport Historical Society purchased a collection of 62 of Sturtevant's paintings and turned them over to Newport's City Hall. There they have hung on permanent exhibition ever since. In 1995 Sturtevant's work was once again the focus of an exhibition at the Newport Art Museum.  


Collection the City of Newport, Rhode Island, courtesy of the Newport Cultural Commission

Painting by the students of Cranston Calvert Elementary School, Newport. The painting is mounted on the wall of the school playground.

 The Leafy Period

from Da Silva, Manuel Luciano. "Portuguese Tower of Newport." In Portuguese Pilgrims & Dighton Rock, 74-78. Bristol, R. I: [s. n.], 1971.

Harold W. Babbitt, Jr.  (1918-1998)


Newport native Harold W. Babbit was born on June 19, 1918, the son of the late Harold W. and Cora Mallett Babbitt. A graduate of Rogers High School, he created the linoleum print at left during the 1935-1936 school year while he was still a student there. It was featured as the cover illustration of the Annual Report of The School Department of the City of Newport, Rhode Island, 1935-1936 (Vol. 71).  A Navy veteran, Babbitt served from 1942 until 1945 and worked at the former Naval Torpedo Station on Goat Island in Newport. A painter and wallpaper hanger, he owned Harold Babbitt's Painting Co. from 1943 until his retirement in 1983. He played the tuba in the Newport Concert Band and  was a member of the Newport Railroad Club, an organization devoted to model trains. The image of the Stone Tower is reproduced with the kind permission of Mrs. Martha Babbitt, who said her late husband would be proud to see his work on the Redwood Library website.