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Fridsma Antique Prints Collection



Scope and Contents

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

Box 1

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Fridsma Antique Prints Collection | Heritage Hall, Hekman Library

By Jen Vos

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Collection Overview

Title: Fridsma Antique Prints Collection

ID: COLL/604

Extent: 1.0 Box

Date Acquired: 09/02/2022

Languages: Dutch;Flemish


Collection of 8 loose prints from the 18th-19th century. These prints are an example of printing and illustration techniques as well as educational content from the time period.

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The Fridsma Antique Prints Collection consists of 8 individual pages printed with different designs from different printers between the 18th and early 19th century. The purpose of each print seems to be educational, and the designs may have been part of an almanac or sold individually by the printer.

Some of the prints a dabbed with colored ink. It is unknown whether this was done by the printer or a member of the Fridsma family. However, there is a collection of similar prints in the collection of the Rijksmuseum in the Netherlands that contains a similar coloring technique. It is possible that this was done by the printer to test color choice or technique of color printing.

Additionally, some of the pages have a watermark that is revealed with a lightbox. There is potential to identify the watermark design for further study.

Collection Historical Note

These prints belonged to the donor’s grandfather, Klaas (Nick) Fridsma. As a child in the Netherlands, Klaas lived with his family on his father, Jouke’s turfskip (peat barge). Klaas and his siblings sometimes attended school, but other times were homeschooled on the barge. It is thought that these prints were part of his home-school curriculum.

Klaas saved these prints and brought them to the United States. He held on to the prints through each successive move, and eventually passed them down to his children and grandchildren, including the donor.

Administrative Information

Repository: Heritage Hall, Hekman Library

Access Restrictions: This collection is open for research use within Heritage Hall.

Acquisition Source: Steven P. Fridsma

Acquisition Method: Donation

Related Materials:

Similar prints are housed in the collection of the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Bernard J. Fridsma was the brother of Klaas Fridsma, grandfather of the donor. Bernard became a professor of Germanic languages at Calvin College. His papers are housed in Heritage Hall as the Bernard J. Fridsma Collection.

Preferred Citation: [item], box 1, Fridsma Antique Prints Collection, Heritage Hall (Hekman Library), Calvin University

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Box:

[Box 1],

Box 1
Folder 1: Background information --- 2022
Brief history of the Clement, De Vri, and Van Stegeren publishing house as well as history of the Donor's family and the story of how these objects were passed down.
Item 1: Print - Kriegscenen
Four illustrations of battle between soldiers in Ottoman uniforms and Prussian (?) uniforms. Text at bottom reads: "No. 143 / Bei Eduard Stange in Berlin"
Item 2: Print - Fish illustrations
Block prints of illustrations of 12 different types of fish. Maker's inscription at the bottom reads: "Gedruke ter Bijbel-drukkerij van David le Jolle, Amsterdam, op de [Rozengracht], No. 170."
Item 3: Print - De Keizer/De Koning

Maker inscription: "Te Leeuwarden, ter Drukkery van Joh Seydel, Bybel-, Boek- en Papier- Verkooper by Vischmarkt."

Block prints of 12 mounted figures illustrating the ruler or emperor of different countries or regions. Illustrations are dabbed with a light red and/or yellow ink.

"No. 15."

Item 4: Print - Mounted Soldiers

Inscription at the top reads: "beschouw in deze print, een aantal dappre helden, wier trouw en dapperheid, in't bloedig veld tetoond, aan hannen vyand soms de wetten ssout voorsselde, behaagt u dit tafreel, dan zyn wy reeds beloond / No. 57"

Block prints of 12 mounted combatents representing the martial dress of different countries.

Illustrations are dabbed with a light red and/or blue ink.

Item 5: Print - The Capture and Burning of Moscow

Title inscription in Dutch and French reads: "De Inneming en Verbrading van Moscou / La Prise et L'incendie de Moscou"

Block prints of illustrations of early 19th-century soldiers attacking and burning a city. Likely depicts to the French occupation of Moscow in 1812.

Illustrations are colored with red and yellow ink/dye.

Inscription at the bottom reads: "Te Turnhout, uyt het Fabriek en Boek-drukkery van P.J. Brepols. Volgens de Wet, zal den na-drukker dezer, voor de regts-banken vervolge No. 22"

Item 6: Print - The Use of Mechanical Engineering

Inscription at the top reads: "Dees Kinderprent leert, kort en goed, Wat nut de Werktuigkunde doet: Hoe zij der menschen werk verligt, En onbegrijplijk veel verriche."

Block print illustrations of 18th-century men using mechanical engineering/tools/machines to do work.

Inscription at the bottom reads: "Gedruke ter Bijbel drukklerij van David le Jolle, te Amsterdam, op de [Rozengracht], No. 170"

Item 7: Print - Bijbelsche figuren van het Nieuwe Testament

Title inscription translates to: "Biblical figures of the New Testament"

Block prints depicting 16 scenes from the New Testament. Illustrations are dabbed with a light red and/or yellow ink.

Maker inscription reads: "Te Zwolle, ter Boekdrukkery van Clement, de Vri en Van Stegeren."

Item 8: Print - Deze Prent zal u vertonen, Welk Gedierte de aard bewonen

Title inscription translates to: "This print will show thee which creatures inhabit the nature."

Block prints of 24 illustrations of animals with accompanying descriptions.

Maker inscription reads: "Te Sneek, bij c. Van Goreum, Bijbel, Boek, en Papierverk. op den hoek van de Schapenmarkt."

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