Portrait of Arthur McArthur, Esq. (1790-1874)

Collection Type

  • Art

Date

1836

GUSN

GUSN-11040

Description

Narrow, rectangular format. Almost full-length portrait of a man, seated with left arm on rolled arm of empire sofa. Column in left background. He wars a dark suit. Unframed. Husband of Sarah Prince McArthur (1991.1348.2), father of Catherine McArthur (1991.1348.3), William Miltimore McArthur (1991.1348.4), and Arthur McArthur II (1991.1348.5).

Details

Descriptive Terms

portraits
oil paint (paint)
canvas
Picture
Portrait
Oil on Canvas
Portrait

Label

"Cherished Possessions": Royall Brewster Smith passed his entire life in rural Maine, painting portraits and apparently houses and signs as well. In 1836 he painted these portraits of five members of the McArthur family of Limington, Maine. Twenty-five years after these were painted, the McArthur family was torn apart when the two brothers enlisted on opposite sides in the Civil War. Their sister Catherine abhorred the war, calling it “fratricidal strife” and describing her brother Arthur, who had enlisted in the Confederate army, as “dear, noble, but mistaken.” She schemed ways to get a letter across the lines to him, not knowing that he had already been killed. Catherine herself did not survive the war but died of heart failure in 1864.

Inscription

In yellow paint, on a narrow blue band at the bottom: ARTHUR MCARTHUR, ESQ., BORN JANUARY 14TH 1790, PAINTED JUNE 1836 BY ROYALL B. SMITH On Verso: 1- foam core backing, in black felt pen: ""2363"" 2- white chalk (?) across top of stretcher on reverse, almost obscured totally by new tacking margin"" ""ARTHUR M. MCARTHUR [illegible date]""

Associated Building

Original to Cogswell's Grant (Essex, Mass.),

Maker

Smith, Royall Brewster, 1801-1849 (Maker)

Location of Origin

USA

Object Type

Art

Dimensions

50 x 27 x 0.75 (HxWxD) (inches)

Credit Line

Gift of Bertram K. and Nina Fletcher Little

Accession Number

1991.1348.1

Places

Maine (United States)
Limington (York county, Maine)