This large scale view captures the hub of the city's prosperity in the 1840's. Based on a watercolor done in 1841. Mobile was at this time the primary port for the exportation of the cotton grown in the rich black soil of upstate Alabama and Mississippi. "The wharves along the riverfront swarmed with boats from upriver piled high with cotton bales. In the lower bay, fleets of oceangoing ships waited for cargoes to be brought down on them on lighters ... The drawing by William Todd, on which William James Bennett based his aquatint, glorifies the city as a thriving seaport..." (Deak).
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