Archives Photograph Collection

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1846 Cornelius Pering / Perring Painting of Bloomington

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This work was painted by Cornelius Pering in or about 1846 for Mrs. Maria Louisa Bollman (the mother-in-law of the donor of the work, R. D. Richardson. Richardson donated the painting to I.U. in 1906).

The painter was facing the south southeast from a point at the north side of Seventh Street near the intersection of College Avenue; in the painting Seventh Street is running from left to right near the bottom of the painting, and College Avenue is running from lower-right toward the upper-left on which the ox-drawn wagon is traveling north.

Cornelius Pering and his family are standing on the north side of Seventh Street with the Bloomington Female Seminary, with open door, directly behind them on the south side of the street. Cornelius Pering was the Principal of the Female Seminary. The building would later be occupied by a William F. Browning.

At extreme left one can see the top of the tower of the old Monroe County Courthouse. At the extreme right one can see the spire of the Methodist Church.

The building at right with what appears to be a cow standing next to it is a home which would one day be occupied by Dr. George W. Bryan, the uncle of future IU President William Lowe Bryan. The building would even later be occupied by Mary Rogers, who received as roomers, David Curry and future IU President Joseph Swain.

The next building further south on College (the building to the left of what appears to be a little boy with a light-blue shirt) was occupied, on the ground floor, by the dental office of a Dr. Lucas and later the millinery shop of Mrs. Moser Arnott.

Page 1 of the March 12, 1906 edition of The Daily Student (a.k.a. The Indiana Daily Student) announces the gift of this painting, in part: "Judge H.D. Richardson, of the class of 1887 has sent a picture of Bloomington, as it appeared in 1847, or thereabout...An extract from a letter from Judge Richardson...tells the circumstances...'The picture was painted in 1846 or about that time..."

date taken:

Circa 1846

accession number:


accession number:


personal name:

Pering, Cornelius

building name:

Bloomington Female Seminary

building name:

Monroe County Courthouse (1826)

corporate name:

Bloomington Female Seminary




Bloomington (Downtown & General Street Scenes)








Pering, Cornelius