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Independence (Squire Jack Porter)

1858 Frank Blackwell Mayer Born: Baltimore, Maryland 1827 Died: Annapolis, Maryland 1899 oil on paperboard 12 x 15 7/8 in. (30.4 x 40.3 cm.) Smithsonian American Art Museum Bequest of Harriet Lane Johnston 1906.9.11 Smithsonian American Art Museum
2nd Floor, South Wing


Gallery Label

Jack Porter, a veteran of the War of 1812 who made a handsome living from Pennsylvania's coal mines, is surrounded by handmade objects, including a corncob pipe, a roughly-hewn wooden bench, and his wife's knitting. As a self-sufficient landholder and businessman, "Squire Jack" embodied an independent and enduring spirit that, by the 1850s, had become an American ideal, celebrated by painters and writers alike. The squire takes his ease on the porch of a substantial home, dressed in a flowered vest, black cravat, and polished boots that signal the rewards of his hard work.

Exhibition Label, Smithsonian American Art Museum, 2006

Keywords

Allegory - quality - determination

Architecture Exterior - detail - porch

Architecture Exterior - domestic - house

Portrait male - Porter, Jack

Recreation - leisure - smoking

painting

paint - oil

paperboard

About Frank Blackwell Mayer

Born: Baltimore, Maryland 1827 Died: Annapolis, Maryland 1899

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Frank Blackwell Mayer

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