Bertha E. Jaques (American, 1863-1941)
"Smoke tree," 1905-1915
17.4 x 11.9 cm mounted on 30.4 x 25.4 cm paper
An enterprising figure much like Anna Atkins, Bertha Jaques is credited for the first etching produced in Chicago. Many of her prints depict subjects such as shipyards and urban scenes that were deemed less acceptable for women artists of the era. Around the time she founded the Chicago Society of Etchers in 1910, Jaques used commercially available cyanotype paper to produce images of plants that recall Atkins' later work. Although she was interested in botany throughout her life and was an active member of the Wild Flower Preservation Society, it was not until later in her printmaking career that she began to etch botanical subjects. It is not known when or how Jaques was introduced to the cyanotype.
According to Jaques's cataloging system, the "F" refers to "Bushes and Shrubs."