DeWitt Clinton (1769-1828)
Oil on canvas
canvas: 48 x 36 in. ( 121.9 x 91.4 cm ) frame: 57 1/2 x 45 1/2 x 5 in. ( 146 x 115.6 x 12.7 cm )
Thomas R. Mercein was a close friend of DeWitt Clinton, and served as comptroller of New York while Clinton was mayor. Clinton had a portrait of himself painted for Mercein. It is probably this portrait, which came to the Society through Mercein's granddaughters. The Society's portrait is essentially a replica of an earlier Clinton portrait by Jarvis, which is now in the collection of the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.
Catalogue of American Portraits in The New-York Historical Society: Oil Portraits, Miniatures, Sculptures, New York: The New-York Historical Society, 1941, p. 54. Dickson, Harold E., John Wesley Jarvis: American Painter, 1780-1840, New York: The New-York Historical Society, 1949, pp. 197-8, 348. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, M. & M. Karolik Collection of American Paintings, 1815 to 1865, Cambridge, MA, Harvard University Press, 1974, pp. 148-9. Vail, R.W.G., Mr. Pintard Takes a Walk: A Factual Fantasy, November 20, 1804," The New-York Historical Society Quarterly, Vol. 38, No. 1, January 1954, pp. 5-30. Catalogue of American Portraits in The New-York Historical Society, Vol. 2, New York: The New-York Historical Society, 1974, pp. 148-9. Addeo, Deborah Bershad, "The New York City Hall Portrait Collection, 1790-1830," Ph. D. Diss., City University of New York, 2005, p. 169. Zygmont, Bryan J., Portraiture and Politics in New York City, 1790-1825, Ph.D. Diss., University of Matyland, College Park, 2006, pp. 215-6, 231.
Bequest of Rosalie Mercein Heiser and Emilie Mercein Heiser
Due to ongoing research, information about this object is subject to change.