Painting by John Gast, American Progress, 1872. Publisher George Crofutt worked with illustrator John Gast to create American Progress, which he distributed as a print with his magazine, Crofutt’s Western World. With so many images of the western landscape already in circulation, Crofutt decided to create a new design. He discussed his ideas with Gast, and together they came up with this image, which Crofutt described as a: ... beautiful and charming female ... floating westward through the air, bearing on her forehead the "Star of Empire" . . . In her right hand she carries a book ... the emblem of education and ... national enlightenment, while with the left hand she unfolds and stretches the slender wires of the telegraph, that are to flash intelligence throughout the land.
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