Alfred Cornelius Howland’s Fourth of July Parade combines softly rendered landscape passages, a view of the artist’s hometown, and a parade of fanciful characters. The buildings in the background are still standing today. This painting is a finished oil study for a larger version of the same subject, reflecting the nineteenth-century American taste for genre painting. Such scenes of everyday life became popular in the 1830s with the rise of Jacksonian democracy. The landscape in Fourth of July Parade is reminiscent of the work of the Barbizon artists, a group of painters, including Corot and Daubigny, with whom Howland was associated when he studied in Paris.