The collection includes twenty-two watercolours and drawings of Iowa in 1853-54 (twenty in the 4° album titled 'Les États-Unis et le Méxique, l'intérêt Européen dans l'Amérique du Nord.', two framed) and there are numerous smaller pencil sketches of Iowa subjects in the small sketchbook. The latter includes further sketches made on his travels on the SS Great Western from Southampton to the Caribbean, Mexico and North America, 1851-1854.
Iowa, which the French had first claimed in the late 17th century with the Mississippi valley, began to be settled in the 1830s following land sales by the local native Americans. The territory was admitted into the Union in 1845 and became a State in 1846, although border disputes with Missouri would continue until 1850. The State was pamphleted throughout Europe as a place of opportunity for farmers and entrepreneurs, and, following immigration from eastern and southern Europe, attracted primarily Irish, German, Scandinavian, Dutch and English settlers through the second half of the 19th century.