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Elihu Root

1926 James Earle Fraser Born: Winona, Minnesota 1876 Died: Westport, Connecticut 1953 bronze 20 x 18 3/4 x 6 5/8 in. (50.8 x 47.6 x 16.8 cm) Smithsonian American Art Museum Gift of an anonymous donor 1929.16.1 Smithsonian American Art Museum
Luce Foundation Center, 4th Floor, 46B


Luce Center Label

Elihu Root is one of James Earle Fraser’s many portraits, which also include sculptures of Theodore Roosevelt and Thomas Edison. Elihu Root was a successful lawyer before President McKinley appointed him secretary of war in 1899; in 1905 he was appointed secretary of state under Theodore Roosevelt, and then became a senator. Although he declined the Republican nomination for president, he remained active in politics for many years and was deeply involved in international relations. Fraser was defensive about making portraits, feeling that they should be included “among the greatest” of works. He was especially pleased with this portrait, claiming that when Elihu Root first saw it, he said, “If this feller took a check to the bank, I think they’d cash it without question.”

Keywords

Occupation - political - statesman

Portrait male - Root, Elihu - bust

sculpture

metal - bronze

cast

About James Earle Fraser

Born: Winona, Minnesota 1876 Died: Westport, Connecticut 1953

More works in the collection by
James Earle Fraser