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The Boy (Charlie Hanson)

Impression: Freer Gallery of Art
Freer Gallery of Art
Number: 145
Date: 1875/1876
Medium: drypoint
Size: 226 x 150 mm
Signed: butterfly at left (2-final)
Inscribed: no
Set/Publication: no
No. of States: 8
Known impressions: 12
Catalogues: K.135; M.133; W.109
Impressions taken from this plate  (12)


The Boy (Charlie Hanson) was not published.


It was first exhibited at the Glasgow International Exhibition in 1888, lent by Bernard Buchanan MacGeorge (1845?-1924)(probably Graphic with a link to impression #K1350703) . 9 It was later shown by H. Wunderlich & Co. in New York in 1898, when two different states were shown (Graphic with a link to impression #K1350102), and by them again in 1903, and by Obach & Co. in London, also in 1903. 10 Charles Lang Freer (1856-1919) lent his second state impression - bought from Wunderlich's in 1898 - to the exhibition organised by the Caxton Club in Chicago in 1900 (Graphic with a link to impression #K1350503, Graphic with a link to impression #K1350702 or Graphic with a link to impression #K1350102). 11

9: Glasgow 1888 (cat. no. 2552-12)


11: Chicago 1900 (cat. no. 100).

After Whistler's death impressions were shown in the Whistler Memorial Exhibitions. The varied effects achieved in successive states through both lines and inking appear to have appealed to collectors, and to the organisers of exhibitions. Four different states were on view at the comprehensive Grolier Club exhibition in New York 1904, one of which was lent by Freer (Graphic with a link to impression #K1350102); two were shown in Boston in 1904, both lent by Howard Mansfield (1849-1938) (Graphic with a link to impression #K1350301, Graphic with a link to impression #K1350505 or Graphic with a link to impression #K1350603); one was shown in Paris in 1905; and one, lent from the Royal Collection (Graphic with a link to impression #K1350302), was on view in London in 1905. 12

12: New York 1904a (cat. nos. 113 a,b,c,d); Boston 1904 (cat. nos. 83, 84); Paris Mem. 1905 (cat. no. 337); London Mem. 1905 (cat. no. 109).


Whistler sold impressions of 'Charlie' in 1877 to the London print dealer, Jane Noseda (b. 1813 or 1814) and to the Royal Collection at Windsor Castle (Graphic with a link to impression #K1350302) for £5.5.0 each. 13 The latter was sold in 1906 through Messrs Agnew and H. Wunderlich & Co. to John Henry Wrenn (1841-1911) and was later bought by Charles Deering (1852-1927) before ending up in the Art Institute of Chicago.

In February 1887 the print dealers, Messrs Dowdeswell ordered an lot of etchings from Whistler, who filled their order as best he could on 28 April. He sent 41 etchings ranging from £4.4.0 to £12.12.0 including The Boy at £8.8.0. Later in the year he sold another to Thomas M. McLean (b. ca 1832) for £10.10.0. The eleven prints sent to McLean ranged in price from £3.3.0 to £15.15.0, which came to a total of £65.10.5 after his 20 per cent discount). 14

An impression of 'The Boy' was sold from the collection of the late Joshua Hutchinson Hutchinson (ca 1829 - d.1891) at Sotheby's, 3 March 1892 (lot 155) and bought by the London print dealer Robert Dunthorne (b. ca 1851) for a reasonable price, £6.6.0.

13: 12 October-5 November 1877, GUW #12735; 19-22 October 1877, #12736.

14: 4 February 1887, GUW #00888; 28 April 1887, #13020; 5 October 1887, GUW #13014.

Francis Seymour Haden, Sr (1818-1910) owned two impressions that were sold through H. Wunderlich & Co. to Charles Lang Freer (1856-1919) in 1898 (Graphic with a link to impression #K1350102, Graphic with a link to impression #K1350503). Freer had already bought an impression in 1893 from Max Williams & Co. (Graphic with a link to impression #K1350502) and would buy another from Thomas Way (1837-1915) in 1905 (Graphic with a link to impression #K1350702).
H. Wunderlich & Co., New York probably sold one to Howard Mansfield (1849-1938), 15 which was later bought by Harris G. Whittemore (d. ca 1937) and finally the Library of Congress (Graphic with a link to impression #K1350603). An impression handled by both Wunderlich's and Colnaghi's was owned by Bernard Buchanan MacGeorge (1845?-1924), Theodore de Witt (dates unknown) and finally Lessing Julius Rosenwald (1891-1971), who gave it to the National Gallery of Art (Graphic with a link to impression #K1350703). Mr and Mrs Ralph King gave a fifth state to the Cleveland Museum of Art (Graphic with a link to impression #K1350z01) and Margaret Selkirk Watson Parker (1867-1936) bequeathed one to the University of Michigan Art Museum (Graphic with a link to impression #K1350504).

15: Stock no. a 3349.