Rembrandt Peale, John Caldwell Calhoun, 1834. Oil
on canvas, 30 ¼ X 25 ⅛. Carolina Art Association, The
Gibbes Art Gallery, Carolina Art Association, Charleston, South Carolina. Bequest of Mrs. Thomas
Frost. (photo: Carolina Art Association).
comfortable haven for the creative frame of mind.
Nearly twenty-five years later, he recalled returning to Florence from a "ramble" in the countryside to witness "the most splendid effect of the
evening sun." Eager to share it with Angelo, he
had run to fetch him and recollected that when
they returned "to my astonishment and delight,
the scene was scarcely changed!" He related the
incident, he said, not so much to show the extent
of his excitement as "to impress the reader with
the fact of the gentle changes of the Italian sky, as
they may be contrasted with the atmosphere of
our fast country."
R. Peale to C. F Mayer, September 9, 1828,
Haines Papers, Quaker Collection, Haverford College,
Ibid. Michael Angelo Peale ( 1814-1833) was
called Angelo by his family.
Rembrandt illuminated his Baltimore Museum
with gas lights in 1816, following the lead of his
brother Rubens, who was then managing the Peale's Philadelphia Museum. Although Rembrandt was technically knowledgeable about this project, his lack of
business acumen and the conflicting demands of his
art and museum administration caused his interests to
suffer. Litigation with his former partners went on for
years, and he never received a satisfactory financial
The Patriae Pater entered the U. S. Capitol collection in 1832. Two replicas of it are known to exist: one
in the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia; the other, in a private collection. In spite of
years of lobbying and even a resolution passed by the
Senate to acquire it, the Yorktown never became part
of the Capitol collection.
Although Peale made financial arrangements
with a number of individuals in New York and Boston,
his main patrons were his brother-in-law, Coleman
Sellers, and the affluent and public-spirited Philadelphian Reuben Haines. They lent him substantial
amounts of cash and provided financial and psychological security for his family during his absence. In
return, Peale signed over to them his stock in the Philadelphia Museum and painted their portraits. In New
York, Rembrandt lent to Philip Hone and others his Washington at Yorktown as security against a loan of
$700, to be repaid in three years in either money or
paintings. New York merchants Andrew Mitchill and Archibald West received Peale's enormous history
painting The Court of Death ( 1820) as security, with
the authority to sell it for $1,500. (See R. Peale to C. Sellers and R. Haines, New York, November 22, 1828, Haines Papers, Quaker Collection, Haverford
College, Haverford, Pennsylvania.) Such arrangements, plus a subscription to make copies after
selected Old Master paintings, provided Peale with
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Book title: The Italian Presence in American Art, 1760-1860.
Contributors: Irma B. Jaffe - Editor.
Publisher: Fordham University Press.
Place of publication: New York.
Publication year: 1989.
Page number: 21.
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