Charles Henry White was born a Canadian in 1878 in Hamilton, Ontario. He studied in Europe and in the United States, at the Art Student League in New York City while perfecting the technique of pen and ink drawing. In 1901 he met the famed etcher Joseph Pennel in Venice, who encouraged the young White to study etching. White made marvelous etchings of many American cities, for which he is famous. Charles Henry White died in Nice on the French Riviera in 1918.
All these images should be enlarged to appreciate the fine detail of the drawing. They appeared in an article written by White in his mid-twenties entitled "The Fulton Street Market" [New York] in the September 1905 issue of Harper's Monthly Magazine. Click on images to enlarge them.
This is an etching entitled "Fulton Market, 1905." Its size is 7-1/8 x 9 inches. It was exhibited in the famous 1913 Armory Show in New York.
The incredible detail of "Fulton Market, 1905" in a plate only 7 by 9 inches (cm 18 x 23) in size.
It seems to me that White must have lived an interesting but short life, dying as he did at the young age of 40 in such an exotic location as the Côte d'Azur. Though Nice was far from the front, the World War I armistice took place late in that year on 11 November. Was he there for his health? Did he die of the Spanish influenza pandemic that spread through Europe before it reached the U.S.A.? Did he participate as a combatant in the war and was convalescing in Nice? I can't find much at all about his life so all I can do is offer his masterful work.
"The Fulton Arcade." What makes this so unusual is White's whimsical interpretation of the characters he observed while sketching the scene.
He writes: "Sketching at the market is fraught with almost insurmountable difficulties. You are no sooner seated than the stragglers who have collected to watch the fleet unloading now devote their energies to watching the progress of your work; but that is to be expected. What would Fulton Market be without its little group of connoiseurs? They are as much a part of of Fulton Market as the baskets of the mussel fleet. The collar-less wise man whispering hoarsely to his friend, 'I seen that guy before in Cherry Hill'. . . ."
"Old-fashioned Fulton Street Facing the Market."
Intricate detail of scene.
"Schooners of the Fishing Fleet Lie Side by Side."
Detail of the above with the Brooklyn Bridge in the background.
Click on all the above images to enlarge them.