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American Paintings and Sculpture
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Photo credit: Yale University Art Gallery
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Photo credit: Yale University Art Gallery
Artist: John Trumbull, American, 1756–1843
Subject: Oliver Ellsworth, American, 1745–1807, LL.D. 1790

Oliver Ellsworth (1745–1807), LL.D. 1790


Oil on wood

3 3/4 × 3 1/8 in. (9.5 × 7.9 cm)
Trumbull Collection

This portrait is part of a set of miniatures painted by John Trumbull in Philadelphia in 1792. Three of the portraits were studies for his unexecuted painting The Inauguration of the President. Tristram Dalton (1832.41) was a Massachusetts senator; Theodore Sedgwick (1832.43)  was a congressman from Massachusetts; and Oliver Ellsworth, one of the most distinguished Connecticut politicians of his time, was also serving as a U.S. senator at the time of George Washington’s inauguration. Ellsworth was later appointed chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.

On view
18th century

Helen A. Cooper et al., John Trumbull: The Hand and Spirit of a Painter (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 1982), 130, pl. 56-60.

Helen A. Cooper et al., Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness: American Art from the Yale University Art Gallery, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2008), 100, no. 42, ill.

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.