Romantic Visions: The California Quadrilles


A Quadrille was a square dance done with four couples and was popular in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The cover of this songbook from 1852 has three main sketches which are meant to convey an image of the west. The top right-hand sketch is of Lady America, the center sketch is of a miner, and the lower left-hand sketch is of ships making the long journey by sea to California. The images romanticize California while simultaneously bringing a nostalgic remembrance of "old America" to the new.


George Peck, "The San Francisco Quadrilles. Respectfully Dedicated to the Ladies of California by Their Admirer, George Peck," ( San Francisco: Atwill & Co., 1852). Available at [].