Cincinnati's Golden Age, 1850-1900
In its first one hundred years, Cincinnati evolved from an isolated frontier outpost to one of the nation's leading art and commercial centers. Between the 1780s and the 1850s, few towns in the United States offered as many commercial opportunities as Cincinnati.
During the nineteenth century, Cincinnati quickly grew as a center for trade and commerce, and by 1859, the city was among the largest industrial centers in the United States, second only to Philadelphia. Because of its position as the largest city in the west at that time, the city was soon given the title Queen City of the West.
Along with rapid industrial growth, the Queen City also flourished in the realm of the visual and decorative arts. From the fine art pottery of Rookwood to the dressmaking skills of the Selina Cadwallader, Cincinnati, from its inception, has and remains today a center for arts and industry.
In this series of lessons, students will explore the history of Cincinnati from 1850 to 1900, commonly referred to as The Golden Age. Through close inspection of Museum objects created during this period, students will discover the stories of five artists and their places in the tapestry of Cincinnati's rich cultural and artistic history.