Bird of Washington by John James Audubon art print

Brandywine General Store

SKU: 11 audubon

An archival premium Quality art Print of the Bird of Washington by John James Audubon for his ornithology book The Birds of North America for sale by Brandywine General Store. There is some confusion over this bird, some people think that Audubon was mistaken and this was a juvenile bird of the Eagle that we know today, while another camp thinks that Audubon was actually describing a now extinct type of Eagle. Mr. Audubon himself named this bird in honor of the great president, he thought that George Washington was as noble and great as this bird. The large raptor was picture #11 in the first Havell edition of Birds of America.

Audubon said of this bird, "It was in the month of February, 1814, that I obtained the first sight of this noble bird, and never shall I forget the delight which it gave me. Not even Herschel, when he discovered the planet which bears his name, could have experienced more rapturous feelings. We were on a trading voyage, ascending the Upper Mississippi. The keen wintry blasts whistled around us, and the cold from which I suffered had, in a great degree, extinguished the deep interest which, at other seasons, this magnificent sight has been wont to wake in me. I lay stretched beside our patroon. The safety of the cargo was forgotten, and the only thing that called my attention was the multitude of ducks of different species, accompanied by vast flocks of swans, which from time to time passed us.

My patroon, a Canadian, had been years engaged in the fur trade. He was a man of much intelligence; and, perceiving that these birds had engaged my curiosity, seemed anxious to find some new object to divert me. An eagle flew over us. 'How fortunate!' he exclaimed, 'this is what I could have wished. Look, sir, the Great Eagle, and the only one I have seen since I left the lakes.' I was instantly on my feet, and having observed it attentively, concluded, as I lost it in the distance, that it was a species quite new to me. My patroon assured me that such birds were indeed rare; that they sometimes followed the hunters, to feed on the entrails of the animals which they had killed when the lakes were frozen over; but that when the lakes were open, they would dive in the daytime after fish, and snatch them up in the manner of the fish-hawk; and that they roosted generally on the shelves of the rocks, where they built their nests, of which he had discovered several by the quantity of white dung scattered below." Audubon bird print #11

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