SPECIAL ADVISORY: The Yale University Art Gallery is open to the public with expanded hours on Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays and offers access to Yale ID holders on weekdays. Learn More

American Paintings and Sculpture
Artist: Chauncey Bradley Ives, American, 1810–1894

Ithiel Town 1784–1844, M.A. (Hon.) 1825



26 × 14 1/2 × 11 1/4 in. (66 × 36.8 × 28.6 cm)
Gift of Dr. William Thompson Peters, B.A. 1825, M.D. 1830

The design of New Haven’s Center Church on the Green, characterized by graceful restraint and classical proportion, established city resident, architect, and civil engineer Ithiel Town as a leader of American architecture in 1814. The same neoclassical style animates this later portrait bust of Town, carved by Chauncey Bradley Ives, a native of nearby Hamden, Connecticut. Town’s likeness is set atop the volume Antiquities of Athens, originally published in 1762, as well as a sample of the crisscross truss invented by Town, which revolutionized bridge construction in the United States. Town worked in other styles; his more ornate design for Center Church’s gothic neighbor, Trinity Church, reflects the eclectic tastes of the early nineteenth century.

Probably made in New York City, New York, United States
On view
19th century

Susan B. Matheson, Art for Yale: A History of the Yale University Art Gallery (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2001), 18–19, fig. 17.

Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of such records is ongoing.