Polly Ouldfield of Winyah

  • Jeremiah Theus, Polly Ouldfield of Winyah, ca. 1761, oil on canvas, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of International Business Machines Corporation, 1969.130

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Polly Ouldfield was born into a life of privilege. Her father was a member of the Commons House of Assembly in London, and records indicate that he owned land in Georgetown in 1752. Polly's husband was a landowner from Charleston, South Carolina, who served as Commissary of Militia in the Georgetown District during the Revolutionary War. (Middleton, Jeremiah Theüs: Colonial Artist of Charles Town, 1953) In this portrait the landscape beyond the window suggests the Ouldfields' significant landholdings, and Polly's luminous, lace-trimmed silk dress embellished with decorative pearls also conveys the richness of planter society. Jeremiah Theüs often showed his subjects lit from above, as in this portrait.

Polly Ouldfield of Winyah
ca. 1761
On View
30 1/8 x 25 1/8 in. (76.5 x 63.8 cm)
Credit Line

Smithsonian American Art Museum

Gift of International Business Machines Corporation

Mediums Description
oil on canvas
  • Portrait female – Ouldfield, Polly – child
Object Number
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