Bald Eagle
(White-headed Eagle)
by John James



Hand-colored aquatint/engraving on paper 97.2 x 64.2 cm

Early in his quest to see and paint all North American birds, Audubon voyaged down the Mississippi on a flatboat. In one day of this trip, he shot five Bald Eagles, a normal practice for Audubon when he was collecting specimens to serve his detailed studies of plumage for his art. He was devoted to and charmed by birds but thought nothing of taking them for study, food, and sport. A century and a half ago, Bald Eagles were much more common than today.