The State Museum of Pennsylvania Image of Penn's Treaty
An Image of Peace: The William Penn Treaty

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Spreading an Image of Peace
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The Great Elm Tree of Shackamaxon (Now Kensington)

George Lehman (American, ac. 1830-1870)
William Smith, publisher
The Great Elm Tree of Shackamaxon (Now Kensington), c. 1830
Aquatint with watercolor, 14 1/2 x 18 image 
Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Meyer P. Potamkin
95.75.104

 

 

 

The image of Penn’s Treaty soon appeared everywhere, in advertisements, on children’s toys, even on fine china. In its many forms the picture became a source of local pride and a colorful illustration of America’s early history.

The "treaty elm," where Native Americans may have met William Penn, served as a visible reminder of the Commonwealth’s founding. A monument in Penn’s Treaty Park in Philadelphia marks the spot where the great tree stood until toppled by a storm in 1810.

 

 

In its form it was remarkable wide spread, but not lofty; its main branch inclined towards the river measured 150 feet in length; its girth around the trunk was 24 feet, and its age, as it was counted by the inspection of its circles of
annual growth, was 283 years.

- - John F. Watson, 1870