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This miniature watercolor on ivory depicts Mrs. Harrison Gray (Sally Foster) Otis from the waist up wearing an orange dress and a pearl necklace with a carnelian cross pendant. It is set within a bronze-colored frame with a molded leaf and berry pattern border surrounding an orange velvet mat with an oval opening with a bronze edge.
ivory (tooth component)
velvet (fabric weave)
In her 1804 portrait, Sally Foster Otis, wife of Harrison Gray Otis - who served as a US senator and mayor of Boston - wore a carnelian cross on a string of pearls. Renowned for her beauty and sparkling conversation, Mrs. Otis was the toast of Washington society.
In "Cherished Possessions"
Ink: "Sally Foster Otis born Janry 21 1770 / wife of Honble. Harrison Gray Otis" Mark: "FE" Engraved: "Susse. Fres" (Ink, Mark and Stamp)
Otis, Harrison Gray, 1765-1848
Otis, Sally (Foster), 1770-1836
Associated With Harrison Gray Otis House, First House (Boston, Mass.),
Malbone, Edward Greene, 1777-1807 (Artist)
Boston, Massachusetts, United States, New England
6 x 5 1/4 x 3/4 (HxWxD) (inches)
Gift of Miss Sophia H. Ritchie
"Art and Commerce in Early New England," presented by Bank of Boston, 1984; "Hidden Treasures from Elegant Eras," Historic Jewelry from the Collections of the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities presented by Shreve, Crump & Low, September 15 - November 30, 1995; "Cherished Possessions: A New England Legacy," Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities, July 2003 to October 2005; "Jewelry at Historic New England," Online exhibit presented by Historic New England launched September 30, 2007 at www.historicnewengland.org/jewelryhistory/.
This miniature is illustrated in Nylander, Richard, "The Magazine Antiques," June 1975, 107: 1139; Carlisle, Nancy, "Cherished Possessions," 2003: 206-208; Fales, Martha Gandy, "Jewelry in America," p. 124;
Massachusetts (United States)
Boston (Suffolk county, Massachusetts)
Title Miniature of Harrison Gray Otis Accession Number 1947.782
Title Cornelian Necklace Accession Number 1967.58