A South East View of the Great Town of Boston in New England. . . Artist: John Carwitham (British, active 1723–41)
After: William Burgis (American, active 1716–31)

probably 1731–1736

Prints and Drawings

Boston and Philadelphia, two of the most important North American cities in the eighteenth century, were both maritime and commercial centers. Their harbors figure significantly in these two engravings (see 1946.9.1780), not just because the open water offered an unobstructed vista but also because the harbors played a dominant role in the cities’ economic welfare. The many ships and boats shown riding at anchor in each harbor and the numerous buildings lining each shore are signs of Boston’s and Philadelphia’s prosperity. Dominating the skylines are the church spires, which not only were the tallest structures of their time but also give concrete evidence of the spiritual character of each city.


Colored engraving


sheet: 29.85 × 44.77 cm (11 3/4 × 17 5/8 in.)

Credit Line

Mabel Brady Garvan Collection

Accession Number



18th century


Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of records is ongoing.



Mabel Brady Garvan Collection, to 1946; Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Conn.

  • Helen A. Cooper et al., Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness: American Art from the Yale University Art Gallery, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2008), 252–53, no. 143, ill.

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