The Birds of America series, by painter and naturalist John James Audubon (born 1785), was first published as a series in sections between 1827 and 1838. In total the series contained 435 life-sized watercolors of North America birds, all reproduced from hand-engraved plates. At the age of 35, Audubon declared his intention to paint every bird in North America.
This mug features Audubon's Snowy Heron Plate, which was accompanied by the following opening text in Birds of America:
"This beautiful species is a constant resident in Florida and Louisiana, where thousands are seen during winter, and where many remain during the breeding season. It is perhaps of a still more delicate constitution than the Blue Heron, Ardea coerulea, as no individuals remain in the neighbourbood of Charleston when the winter happens to be rather colder than usual. In its migrations eastward it rarely proceeds farther than Long Island in the State of New York; few are seen in Massachusetts, and none farther to the east. My friend Professor Macculloch never heard of it in Nova Scotia, and I cannot imagine on what authority Wilson stated that it inhabits the sea-coast of North America to the Gulf of St. Lawrence. My friend Nuttall also asserts, without mentioning on what evidence, that, by pursuing an inland course, it reaches its final destination in the wilds of Canada. It has not been observed in any part of the western country; nay, it rarely ascends the Mississippi as high as Memphis, or about two hundred miles from the mouth of the Ohio, and cannot be said to be at all abundant much farther up the great river than Natchez. In fact, the maritime districts furnish its favourite places of resort, and it rarely proceeds farther inland than fifty or sixty miles, even in the flat portions of the Carolinas, or in the Middle States, where it prefers the islands along the Atlantic coast."
The vibrant design is permanently applied to the mug and will not fade over time, even with frequent use.
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