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Charleston 1790

Courtesy of the South Carolina Historical Society

In Charleston 1790, Revolutionary hostilities are over. The city is now part of a newly independent nation, and the visual perspective has changed. The harbor is no longer center stage, for the city is shown from off the tip of White Point. This is the first view where the artist has put the city on equal footing with its harborfront. The cityscape is sharply drawn, almost prickly, with steeples and chimneys to the left and ships masts lined along the harbor to the right. The water appears tossed and stormy in a controlled sort of way, and the few ships shown are careening at odd angles. But above the city, the parting clouds signify the passing of the storm and a banner bearing the word "Charleston SC" hangs from the heavens.