OB71RedShoulderedWinterHawkJohn James Audubon
Draft for the “Winter Hawk” [Red-shouldered Hawk (Buteo lineatus), Study for Havell pl. 71], first page for the Ornithological Biography entry
Library, Manuscript Division

This sheet is one of ten drafts that Audubon penned for sections of his five-volume Ornithological Biography (1831–39) which are now held by the Historical Society’s Department of Manuscripts. In both his written and painted work, Audubon combined a naturalist’s curiosity with an artist’s eye and a poet’s expressiveness. His writings are filled with vivid images and stories that actively engage his audience with the birds whose lives he so painstakingly researched and brilliantly documented. Audubon’s revisions preserve the spirit of the published text which, like his watercolors, he continued to refine.

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