GILL, S.T. (Samuel Thomas), 1818-1880
Diggers shipping from Melbourne / The Shipping Agents are netting handsome
[Melbourne : James J. Blundell, between 1852 and 1855]. Illustrated letter paper, 182 x 115 mm, bifolium with lithographed letterhead reproducing one of the plates from S.T. Gill’s Sketches of the Victoria gold diggings and diggers as they are (Melbourne : Macartney & Galbraith, August 1852); lithographed image, including captions, 90 x 90 mm; the rear blank side has a light hinge mark, but this is an exceptionally fine example.
This rare illustrated letter paper reproduces a slightly modified version of goldfields artist S.T. Gill’s Diggers shipping from Melbourne: the detail in the notices on the wall in the shipping office is omitted, and the lithograph includes a second, calligraphic caption which does not appear in the original version. According to Shar Jones, ‘at least forty-six vignettes were lithographed for letterheads with wry explanatory captions.’ (DAAO)
A rare piece of printed ephemera from the early Victorian gold rush era.
We can locate no other example of this particular letter paper in Australian collections.