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Cranstone, Lefevre F. Street Scene in Richmond, 1859 – 1860


Lefevre J. Cranstone was born in England and exhibited at the Royal Academy from 1845 to 1865. In the years before the Civil War in the United States he traveled as a landscape artist and sketched in the Midwest in 1859–60. He was recognized for his etchings as well as his watercolors.

  • Street Scene in Richmond, 1859-60
  • 6 1/2″ x 11″
  • Indiana Historical Society
  • Keywords: paintings, urban landscapes, cultural landscapes, watercolor and pencil
  • Subjects: outdoors, winter, streets, buildings, people, hats, wagons, domestic animals, trees

This painting depicts the National Road (U.S. Highway 40), which passes through Richmond. The perspective of the streetscape creates a sense of depth and distance. Many valuable historical details are included—the buildings, the horsedrawn hay wagon, the people’s clothing. Notice how the colors in the sky contribute to the wintry feeling.

Some Points To Consider

  • Explain to students that the artist attempted to document what he saw. Ask students to list the various ways his painting describes Richmond, Indiana, in the 1860s (for example, architecture, weather, clothing, and outdoor activity). (Art 4.1.1, 4.1.2, 4.2.2, 4.4.1)