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The Mountain Torrent
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The Mountain Torrent

Description Conservation Provenance Inscription Credit
Description Extracts from Alfred Jacob Miller’s original text, which accompanied his images of Native Americans, are included below for reference. "While sketching this wild scene, we observed our Commander and a mountaineer riding round to various points, and to our question when he returned, 'Whether he inteded to cross?' he answered 'Yes.' Not the slightest necessity existed for this (except that river looked a little in opposition), as we had to return again:- but this willfulness on the part of the torrent settled the question. As my companion P--- had been drowned in a similar crossing, the prospect was not overpleasant. In a little time the mountaineer called out to us, 'Allons nous en - mes amis! J'ai la trouvé la place.' We rejoined him & in he plunged. The water rushed with such force that, although it was near his arm pit on one side, it was below his knee on the other, at the same time drifting him down the river, but we saw him reach the opposite shore in safety." A.J. Miller, extracted from "The West of Alfred Jacob Miller" (1837). In July 1858 William T. Walters commissioned 200 watercolors at twelve dollars apiece from Baltimore born artist Alfred Jacob Miller. These paintings were each accompanied by a descriptive text, and were delivered in installments over the next twenty-one months and ultimately were bound in three albums. Transcriptions of field-sketches drawn during the 1837 expedition that Miller had undertaken to the annual fur-trader's rendezvous in the Green River Valley (in what is now western Wyoming), these watercolors are a unique record of the closing years of the western fur trade.
Date Description Narrative
5/09/1984Loan Considerationexamined for loan
2/09/1994Treatmentmounted; re-housed
Provenance William T. Walters, Baltimore, 1858-1860, by commission; Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1894, by inheritance; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Inscriptions [Monogram] Lower left: AJMiller
Credit Commissioned by William T. Walters, 1858-1860

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watercolor on paper
(Painting & Drawing)
Accession Number
9 5/16 x 12 1/2 in. (23.6 x 31.7 cm)
  • USA (Place of Origin)
Location Within Museum
Not On View


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