Captain Joseph Anthony

  • Walter Robertson, Captain Joseph Anthony, ca. 1794, watercolor on ivory, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Ruel P. Tolman, 1952.12.1

Luce Center Label

Captain Joseph Anthony (1738-1798) was a prosperous Philadelphia merchant. His son Joseph Jr. became a prominent silversmith, and his son Josiah, a fellow merchant. The miniature of Josiah Hewes Anthony is in this collection [see 1952.12.2]. On the back of Captain Anthony’s miniature is a second painting---a mourning scene, with two female figures holding two bluebirds and a red rose. They sit next to a large funerary urn under a massive tree, a temple behind them in the rolling landscape. The tree and grass are made with clippings of hair, and braided locks---perhaps from the captain himself---adorn the perimeter of the image. This second painting is clearly by a different artist, and was probably added to the miniature after the captain’s death.

Captain Joseph Anthony
ca. 1794
Not on view
sight 2 3/4 x 2 1/4 in. (7.0 x 5.7 cm) oval
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Ruel P. Tolman

Mediums Description
watercolor on ivory
  • Portrait male – Anthony, Joseph – waist length
  • Occupation – military – captain
Object Number
Linked Open Data
Linked Open Data URI

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