McSorley’s Back Room


John Sloan (1871-1951), McSorley’s Back Room, etching, 1916, signed bottom right margin, titled and inscribed “100 proofs.” [also signed and dated in the plate lower left, and titled in the plate in the margin below the borderline] Also signed bottom left margin by the printer Charles White. Reference: Morse 181, third state (of 3). From the edition of 100, of which 90 impressions were printed. In excellent condition, on a cream wove paper with full margins and deckle edges, 5 x 6 7/8, the sheet  8 1/2 x 11 inches, archival mounting.

A fine impression, printed in black ink.

In 1945 Sloan wrote of this print made about 30 years earlier: “Old John McSorley and two friends in the back room of the now famous McSorley’s… Nothing but ale was ever served there…A very remarkable saloon…No woman ever touched foot in there and no hard liquor was ever served.” McSorley’s still exists in New York City (and it has admitted women for many years).