Larger Type
Smaller Type

Search Collections

Woman in Black Dress

ca. 1835-1840 Attributed to M. W. Hopkins Born: Harwinton, Connecticut 1789 Died: Williamsburgh, Ohio 1844 oil on wood panel 26 x 21 1/2 in. (66.1 x 54.6 cm.) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of Herbert Waide Hemphill, Jr. and museum purchase made possible by Ralph Cross Johnson 1986.65.120 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 3rd Floor, 1A

Luce Center Label

The identity of this sitter is unknown. On the eve of marriage, young women often had their portraits made, and this portrait likely marked that event. The woman wears a fine dress ornamented with an elaborate lace collar, and a gold and jade chain with a miniature painting hangs around her neck (Face to Face: M.W. Hopkins and Noah North, Museum of Our National Heritage, 1988). Her sober expression and elaborate hairstyle, worn “up” as a matron would do, help to convey a sense of gravity at a turning point in her life.


Portrait female - unidentified - waist length


folk art

paint - oil