Category Archives: flora

South Car’lina tickle: Cake walk

South Car'Lina Tickle

Location:  Historic American Sheet Music Collection, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina

Title of Song:  South Car’lina tickle : Cake walk

Composer: Geibel, Adam

Publisher: Theodore Presser

Year & Date:  1898, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Collection/Call Number/Copies:  Music # B-376

Historic American Sheet Music Item #: b0376

Basic Description
A tall, lanky man in a three-piece suit and a woman in a blouse with puffed sleeves and a long patterned skirt “strut their stuff” with their heads tilted upward. The man holds his right hand up daintily, showing off a glimmering jewel on his pinky finger. The luminosity of the jewel matches the gleaming button or brooch at the center of his ruffled shirt. With his head slightly raised and a smile on his face, he seems proud of his appearance. His yellow-dappled bow-tie and the poufy flower on his lapel nearly rival his head in size. Something that appears to be a medal dangles from his waist and his coat tails flare out jauntily. The woman’s skirt is patterned with what appear to be gourds, and her elaborately-clothed figure casts a dark shadow on the ground.  She too holds out her right hand, drawing attention to a ring on her finger, but her attention seems to be caught by the large flower in her left hand.

Personal Description
The self-importance of the couple seems to be a theme in this image, emphasized by the man’s jewels and the almost haughty posture of both figures.  However, the presence of three large flowers and the gourd-like design on the woman’s skirt seem to water down or distract from these overt connotations of extravagance and material wealth, almost giving the figures a slightly folksy quality. By 1898, the year this song sheet was published, the cakewalk as a couples dance had become popular in ballrooms and also as a stage act. Couples stepped high to a tune, while judges eliminated them one by one, presenting the best pair with a cake. Couples were judged on their inventiveness, elegance and grace, so the exaggerated poise and costume of the two figures in this image may be a highly exaggerated and caricatured interpretation of the qualities of the dance itself. This could be an ironic reversal of the original meaning of the cakewalk if the theory that it originated among slaves as a satire of white ballroom culture is true.

Reality Check

Gertrude Bustill Mossell (1855-1948) and Nathan Francis Mossell
Gertrude Bustill Mossell was a journalist, author, and member of the women’s suffrage movement. She was born in Philadelphia to a prominent African American family. After graduating from the Robert Vaux Grammar School, she taught school for seven years. In 1893 she married a leading Philadelphia physician, Nathan Frances Mossell. They married in 1893 and had four children together. The marriage ended her career as a teacher since married women were not allowed to teach. In 1894 she published the first of her books, The Work of the Afro-American Woman, a collection of essays and poems illustrating the contemporary work of black women. The book chronicles the achievements of thousands of African American women in different fields.

Bustill was also a journalist, and her articles on political and social issues were published in a number of periodicals including the AME Church Review, the Philadelphia Echo, the Indianapolis Freeman, the Franklin Rankin Institute, and Our Women and Children. Bustill edited the New York Freeman, the Indianapolis World, and the New York Age. In Philadelphia, she wrote syndicated columns in the Echo, the Philadelphia Times, the Independent and the Press Republican. Mossell also assisted in editing the Lincoln Alumni magazine, a journal of the Lincoln University, a prestigious institution for educating black men, such as Bustill’s husband, Nathan Mossell.

Because most hospitals in Philadelphia refused care to black patients, Bustill and her husband raised funds to open the Frederick Douglass Memorial Hospital and Training School. The hospital opened in 1895 with an academic program to help black women become nurses.

Bustill’s husband, Nathan Francis Mossell was a prominent Philadelphia physician born in Canada. After graduating from Lincoln University in Pennsylvania, Mossell entered the University of Pennsylvania Medical School and became the first African-American physician to be elected to the Philadelphia County Medical Society.  Dr. Mossell served as superintendent and medical director of the Douglass Memorial Hospital for 47 years. He was a founder of the Philadelphia branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored people and co-founder of the Philadelphia Academy of Medicine and Allied Sciences. He died in 1946. His wife Gertrude died two years later, in 1948.

(Sources: http://www.archives.upenn.edu/people/1800s/mossell_nathan_f.html, New York Times, Dr. Nathan F. Mossell, Oldest Active Negro Physician, Uncle of Paul Robeson, Was 90, October 29, 1946)

Advertisements

My Home in Alabam’

My Home in Alabam'

Location:  Historic American Sheet Music Collection, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina

Title of Song:  My Home in Alabam’

Composer: Putnam, James S.

Publisher: John F. Perry

Year & Date:  1881, Boston, Massachusetts

Collection/Call Number/Copies: Music#  B-666
Historic American Sheet Music Item #: b0666

Basic Description
A man sits on a wooden chair in a sparse garret bedroom with a banjo on his lap and his head in his hand. He stares at the viewer with a distant, troubled look, in a pose like Auguste Rodin’s “The Thinker.” The town-like setting in the window contrasts with the plantation scene above— a dream space corralled by a dense frame of cloud-like circles.  The cracks and exposed bricks in the wall, along with the jagged hemlines of the man’s pant legs set depressing tone.  Rather than being integrated with the picture, the title text is set in the white space around the image. Two title options, “My Dear Savannah Home,” and “My Home in Alabam” are listed in sober typeface.

Personal Description
Each title option can lead to a different and contradictory interpretation of the image. Interestingly, this pamphlet includes two song sheet covers for other “plantation melodies” printed by the same publisher. This imagery makes light of the plantation experience, showing caricatured African Americans dancing or filling pails with berries. Like the song illustrated on the main cover, these songs also have two titles each that contrast oddly with each other. “De Huckleberry Picnic”  implies a recreational activity at one’s own free will but “Since I Saw de Cotton Grow” suggests the forced labor of slavery or the exploitation of sharecropping.  “My Dear Savannah Home” implies that the seated man is nostalgic for plantation life. But “My Home in Alabam” is vague, allowing the plantation memory invading the scene to be interpreted not as a cherished dream but rather an oppressive nightmare.

Reality Check

Edward Alexander Bouchet
(1852-1918)
Edward Alexander Bouchet was an educator and scientist who was born in New Haven Connecticut. His family was a member of the Temple Street Congregational Church, a stopping point for fugitive slaves along the Underground Railroad.

In 1868, Bouchet was accepted into Hopkins Grammar School, a private institution that prepared young men for the classical and scientific departments at Yale College. He graduated first in his class at Hopkins and graduated from Yale in 1874, ranking sixth in his class. In 1876, he completed a dissertation on geometrical optics,  becoming the first African American to earn a PhD from an American University and the sixth American of any race to earn a PhD in Physics.

Bouchet moved to Philadelphia in 1876 to teach at the Institute for Colored Youth, the city’s only high school for African American students.  Bouchet gave public lectures to his community in Philadelphia on scientific topics and was a member of the Franklin Institute, a foundation for the promotion of the mechanic arts, chartered in 1824.

In 1908, he became principal of Lincoln High School in Gallipolis, Ohio, where he remained until 1913, when an attack of arteriosclerosis compelled him to resign and return to New Haven. He died in his boyhood home in 1916.

(Source: African American Lives, edited by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. and Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham, Oxford University Press, 2004.

I’se Gwine to Leave Old Dixie; Companion to (I’se Gwine Back to Dixie)

I'se Gwine Back To Leave Old Dixie

Location:  Historic American Sheet Music Collection, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina

Title of Song:  I’se Gwine to Leave Old Dixie; Companion to (I’se Gwine Back to Dixie)

Composer: White, Charles Albert

Lyricist: Cooper, George

Lithographer: F.M. Haskell  & Co.

Publisher: White, Smith & Company

Year & Date:  1879, Boston, Massachusetts

Collection/Call Number/Copies:  Music# B-745

Historic American Sheet Music Item #: b0745

Basic Description
This lithograph consists of a framed illustration with embellished lettering above and below. The illustration shows an old man and woman sitting on top of a horse and buggy. The vehicle is stuffed with their personal belongings— mostly the tools of manual labor— a hoe, a broom, a saw— some chairs, and some wooden barrels.  The man has a white beard and what appears to be a cane behind his shoulder. He is hunched over, tired-looking and frail. The woman holds a clock in her hands. The horse’s eyes are covered by blinders and two children, a boy and a girl, stare at it. A scrawny dog with its ribs showing trots next to them. The outlines of two people working in the field are faintly visible.

Personal Description
The clock stands out from the farm-related belongings and seems to symbolize the pressures facing the couple; the scene could be read in the context of the failure of Reconstruction.  But is this couple sad to leave home or simply worn out, weary, and hungry? In other song sheet covers on this blog, “Dixie,” as an imagined place, is invested with emotional power. A pull toward self-improvement and prosperity in the North is sometimes undermined by disillusionment and a mental Southward slide toward familiarity and so-called comfort. “I’se Gwine to Leave Old Dixie” is a song about leaving the South out of financial need, but wanting to stay. The lithograph could be seen as representing the transition from an idealized way of life to a world of  urgent financial pressures. Rather than representing the hope of a new generation, the children almost seem to be witnessing their own fate in the troubles of the older couple.

Reality Check

Ellen Craft (1826-1891) and William Craft (1824-1900)
Ellen Craft was a light-skinned African American slave woman who helped her husband escape from slavery by passing as white. Her husband William wrote an autobiographical slave narrative that described their dramatic escape.

They traveled by public transportation from their home in Georgia to freedom in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, staying in hotels along the way.

Ellen Craft was born in Clinton Georgia to a biracial slave woman and her master. She was so light-skinned that she was often mistaken for a member of her father’s white family. At age 11, she was given as a wedding gift to daughter who lived in Macon. There she met William and married him in 1846. Together they devised their escape plan— to pose as a white slaveholder with his slave.

Because a white woman would not have traveled alone with a male slave, Ellen had to pretend to be not only white but a man. She cut her hair, changed her walk, and wrapped her jaw in bandages to disguise her lack of a beard. To hide her illiteracy, she wrapped her right arm in a sling to have a ready excuse for being unable to sign papers. She explained the bandages by claiming to be an invalid traveling north to receive medical care. They traveled this way from Georgia to Pennsylvania by train, steamer, and ferry without being discovered, arriving in Philadelphia on Christmas Day in 1848.

In Philadelphia they befriended William Lloyd Garrison and then moved to Boston, Massachusetts, where they traveled as anti-slavery lecturers. They fled to England in 1850, after the passage of the Fugitive Slave Act. In 1868, following the Civil War, they returned to the United States and settled near Savannah, Georgia. They farmed a cotton and rice plantation and attempted to start a school. But financial debts from the plantation and hostility from white neighbors forced them to close it. Ellen Craft died in 1891. William moved to Charleston, South Carolina, where he died in 1900.

(Source: Africa Online, http://www.africanaonline.com/slavery_ellen_william_craft.htm)

The Coal Black Rose

The Coal Black Rose

The Coal Black Rose

Location:                 Historic American Sheet Music Collection, Duke University  (Durham, North Carolina)

Title of Song:          The Coal Black Rose

Composer:              Snyder, White

Publisher:               J.L. Frederick

Year & Place:        1829; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Collection/Call Number/Copies:                Music B. 128, no. 28

Historic American Sheet Music Item #:   hasmsm.009

Basic Description

In the diminutive image here embedded amongst text and musical notation, an anthropomorphized rose appears.  The petals are arranged to constitute the face of a person approximating a pair of eyes, eyelids and eyebrows in darker hatching and a pair of lips.  Inserted between the eyes is a nose.  Framing this sexually ambiguous “flower-face” is an array of six leaves.  A second image appearing on another page of this sheet music shows a man with a banjo.  The contour lines of his body and the slight coloration suggest a cursory sketch.  Wearing a dark hat, the subject stands with head turned towards the viewer and his accentuated buttocks and calf protrude.

Personal Description

Among the numerous words to describe this image, ‘odd’ and ‘creepy’ seem particularly apt.  One has only to describe it as an “animated face-plant” to understand this.  Shrouded in ambiguity are any identifying or contextual features or characteristics.  What is clear is that artist is relocating the viewer in different visual realm.  This image’s illusion is conveyed by the lack of a connecting body, or any other visual cues that reference the real.  The second image then, should stand in striking contrast as the full body of a male banjo player is visualized.  Furthermore, the facial features of this man resemble those of the rose. Still, this image is also illusionistic for its curious lack of details and corporeal distortion.  Finally, its placement of the banjo where the male phallus might be is suggests an eroticism that might be derivative of the eras latent sexual deviancies displayed in other art forms such as minstrelsy.

Reality Check

Reverend Richard Allen

Richard Allen was the leading figure in events that produced the independent black church movement and led to the establishment of the African Methodist Episcopal Church.  He also served as one of the early bishops of the AME church.  Allen saved enough money to purchase his freedom from his delaware master in 1777, the year in which he also was converted.  Within a few years he was preaching and winning the favor of Bishop Francis Asbury, the founder of American Methodism.  In 1786 he moved to Philadelphia, where he began to hold prayer meetings for his own people.  His proposal to set up a separate place of worship was opposed by whites and some blacks.  It was only after the officials of St. George’s Church, where he frequently preached, proposed to segregate the large number of blacks who came to hear him that it became clear to him and others that blacks should have a separate church. Allen was able to organize and dedicate Bethel Church in 1794.  In 1799 Bishop Asbury ordained him deacon and later he was elevated to the status of an elder.  His church became known as the Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church.

Lucinda Cinda Jane

Lucinda Cinda Jane

Lucinda Cinda Jane

Location:            Historic American Sheet Music Collection, Duke University  (Durham, North Carolina)

Title of Song:    Lucinda – Cinda – Jane

Composer:         Hart, Joseph (Hart & De Mar)

Illustrator:        American Lithographic

Publisher:          Schubert Piano Company

Year & Place:   1894; New York, New York

Collection/Call Number/Copies:                 Music B-864

Historic American Sheet Music Item #:   hasm.b0864

Basic Description

This cover depicts a portrait of a couple in a circular frame. This is centered against a floral and botanical background reminiscent of an arabesque pattern. The intertwined green broad-leafed plants and orange and purple flowers are also situated within a pale yellow background. With their heads leaning towards each other, the male and female subjects slightly open their mouths to reveal cloying, wide-toothed smiles as they look into each others eyes. On the left, the woman wears her hair in soft, full curls with a beaded headband and a large blue ribbon. Around her neck is a gold-toned necklace with a heart-shaped pendant. Because the couple is only shown from the shoulders upward, very little of the woman’s garments show. The viewer is only able to see the sheer fabric of the bodice and two large red ribbons at each shoulder. Her male partner in this image wears a black blazer with a blue and white striped shirt and a black-and-white polka-dot bow. Each of these figures has abnormally bright red lips and the whites of their eyes and teeth pop out of the image.

Personal Description

This image is striking on many levels. These portraits show two busts. In other words, most of the body is invisible. Other inaccessible pieces of information include their individual identities as well as their relationship to each other. The two characters seem as though they have been smiling for too long. Their smiles seem forced, fake and overdone. The two seem too happy and simultaneously, suffering from fatigue.  What is most bothersome about this image is its visual connections to minstrelsy. In particular, the saturated red color of the lips recalls the archetypal minstrel mask. The large, toothy, saccharine smiles work in the exact same way. What does it mean that the artist connects these two blacks with this type of masking? What does it mean that they are surrounded or framed by a flat pattern of leaves, plants and other phenomena from the natural world?

Reality Check

Susan Maria Smith McKinney

Susan Maria Smith McKinney Steward (1847-1918) and William G. McKinney

Born in Brooklyn, New York, Susan Maria Smith was the first black woman to graduate from medical college in New York state. After graduating as valedictorian from the New York Medical College for Women, she attended the Long Island Medical College Hospital, where she was the only woman in the entire college.

Married in 1874 to the Rev. William G. McKinney.  McKinney was an Episcopal minister originally from South Carolina. The couple lived in Steward’s parents’ home until 1874, when they moved to a predominantly white area of Brooklyn. McKinney was 17 years older than his wife. The couple had two children: Anna, who became a schoolteacher, and William Sylvanus, who, like his father, became an Episcopal priest. The family lived comfortably in Brooklyn.

In 1881, while the couple was still together, Smith McKinney co-founded the Women’s Hospital & Dispensary in Brooklyn, which later became the Memorial Hospital for Women and Children. She served on the staff of the New York Medical College and Hospital for Women in Manhattan, and from 1892 to 1896 was manager of the medical staff of the Brooklyn Home for Aged Colored People. She also served as church organist and choir director for Brooklyn’s Bridge Street Church.  In 1890, William McKinney suffered a cerebral hemorrhage and was unable to maintain his normal work schedule. Steward supported the family, as well as six of her relatives who lived in the McKinney home. William McKinney died on November 24, 1895 when Steward was 48.His wife practiced as Dr. Susan Smith McKinney until his death in 1896.

(Source: http://www.answers.com/topic/susan-mckinney-steward; http://www.aetna.com/foundation/aahcalendar/1986steward.html)

This image is striking on many levels.  These portraits show two busts.  In other words, most of the body is invisible.  Other inaccessible pieces of information include their individual identities as well as their relationship to each other.  The two characters seem as though they have been smiling for too long.  Their smiles seem forced, fake and overdone.  The two seem too happy.  What is most bothersome about this image is its visual connections to minstrelsy.  In particular, the saturated red color of the lips recalls the archetypal minstrel mask.  The large, toothy, saccharine smiles work in the exact same way.  What does it mean that the artist connects these two blacks with this type of masking?  What does it mean that they are surrounded or framed by a flat pattern of leaves, plants and other phenomena from the natural world?

De Lord he make us Free:Freedmans Song

Freedman's Song

Freedmans Song

Location:  Historic American Sheet Music Collection, Duke University, Durham, North Carolina

Title of Song:  De Lord he make us Free; Freedmans Song

Composer:  Pation, Eman. C.

Lyricist: Gates, Charles

Publisher:  W. Jennings Demorest

Year & Place:  1865, New York, New York

Collection/Call Number/Copies:  Music B-1059

Historic American Sheet Music Item #:   b1059

Basic Description
The blue cover image is comprised by three frames: a fluted outer edge; a trellis covered in thick vegetation; and an oval of vines framing an inner portrait of four figures. These figures appear awkward, heavy, and immobile. The boy to the left rests his hands on a pole and stares into space.  The boy in the center has drooping eyelids and looks almost looks drugged or dazed. He might be marching or running in place, but his movements seem slow and suspended.  The woman standing in back stares at what appears to be nothing, holding a baby that blends amorphously into her figure. The vegetation around the trellis overwhelms the comparatively small portrait and includes a random pumpkin in the lower left, ferns, and weeds. Roses and grapes cover the top of the trellis, on either side of an American flag-styled shield.

Personal Description
This sheet music pamphlet was published in 1865, the year the Thirteenth Amendment was adopted and two years after Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. The play on words in the musician’s name, Eman C. Pation, makes this event seem like part of a joke or a child’s game, demonstrating that this song is not a product of serious celebration but rather of parody. The pamphlet also features another full-page illustration in addition to the blue cover page. This is a genre scene in an alley-like space between a row of shacks and a tall fence. There are at least a dozen people, many of them children, milling around or relaxing.  In fact, the adults are all sitting, with the exception of a group of men in the background. In general, the figures imply stasis, timelessness, and passivity. The song lyrics reflect this passivity:  “De Lord, He make us free indeed…We plant de rice and cotton seed. An’ see de sprout some day; We know it come, but not de why- De Lord know more than we.” The message is that African Americans did nothing but  “plant de cotton seeds” and wait passively for God and the North to free them. Like the lyrics, the suffocating presence of Nature on the cover page ties the figures in the portrait to their “rightful” agricultural work. But it also suggests that African Americans themselves had nothing to do with achieving Emancipation; it was a “coming,” the result of a natural process, and driven by the divine Creator.

Reality Check

Amanda Smith
Amanda Smith
(1837-1915)

Amanda Smith was born into slavery in Long Green, Maryland. Her liberator was her father, Samuel Berry: after having purchased himself, he purchased this wife, Mariam, and their five children. Eventually, the Berry family expanded to include eight more children, and moved to a farm in York County, Pennsylvania, where their home became an Underground Railroad station.

In 1854, at the age of seventeen, Amanda Berry married Calvin Devine. The couple lived in New York City, where Amanda worked as a domestic servant, and had two children, one of whom died in infancy. Life with Calvin, a drunkard, was fraught with misery, but Amanda was not crushed. This was largely due to the spiritual conversion she experienced during the Great Awakening in 1856.

Not long after the outbreak of the Civil War, Calvin Devine joined the Union Army, and was killed in battle in 1863. Amanda’s next husband was a coachman named James Smith. Philadelphia became Amanda’s new home, and she continued to earn a living at the only trade she knew: domestic service. The African Methodist Episcopal Church became the denomination she embraced, and she worshiped at Mother Bethel, the denomination’s cornerstone church where her husband was a deacon.

Amanda knew more sorrow during her second marriage. The three children she had with James died very young. Moreover, James Smith proved to be a disappointment as a husband and as a Christian. Ironically, it was during her husband’s falling away from the church that Amanda was called to preach. After James’ death, Amanda Smith’s decision to obey the call in 1869 initially met with much resistance from the A.M.E. clergy.

When she began, Amanda Smith preached primarily in New York City and New Jersey, steadily amassing a strong following. By 1870, evangelism was her only “job.” By the end of the decade, she was known as far north as Maine and as far south as Tennessee. By 1890, Smith had brought souls to Christ and strengthened fellow believers in England, India, Liberia and Sierra Leone, emerging as one of the A.M.E. Church’s most effective missionaries, and widening the way for more black women to answer the call to preach.

In 1912, when she was in her mid-seventies, Amanda Berry Smith moved to Florida. She did so at the urging of a wealthy white businessman, George Sebring, who had long admired her work. This man provided Smith with a lovely home and saw to it that she had no want or worries for the remainder of her days.

(Source: African American Lives, edited by Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham, Cambridge University Press, 2000.)

Polly Perkins of Pemberton Green

Polly Perkins of Pemberton Green

Polly Perkins of Pemberton Green

Location:          Historic American Sheet Music Collection, Duke University  (Durham, North Carolina)

Title of Song:   Polly Perkins of Pemberton

Composer:       Clifton, Harry

Illustrator:      Bufford, J.H.

Publisher:        Tolman, Henry

Year & Place:  Boston, Massachusetts

Collection/Call Number/Copies:                Music B-2061

Historic American Sheet Music Item #:  hasm.b2061

Basic Description

This sheet music cover is composed of five small vignettes (cameo) portraits.  Each portrait is framed by lush botanical foliage as vines and leaves seem to grow out of the bottom of the page and wind around in circles.  Within each oval frame is a male.  In each one, the man wears different set of clothing and his body takes on a different position.  In all portraits but one the man appears in blackface make-up.  All five images depict the same person, presumably, R. Bishop Buckley.  In the cameo of the top left hand corner, the man wears sits on a chair in a light-colored, pajama-like garments while holding a instrument requiring a long bow.  The central vignette shows Buckley in a vest and conventional pants.  Here, however, he sits on the ground with his arms open, gesturing toward the viewer in a sinister manner.  In the adjacent portrait man sports a coat and scarf with a unrecognizeable cap on his head.  The last portrait beneath this shows him sitting again in profile with a tambourine as his eyes stare out at the audience.

Personal Description

The most striking aspect of this image is not the depiction of one man in four different minstrel costumes.  It is that he is shown, purposively, both with and without the blackface mask.  Indeed, the whole composition exudes a revelatory tone as the foliage seems to have been lifted or brushed aside like curtains to reveal each character.  And this calls into question what differences existed between Buckley and his blackface incarnations.  With a partially empty nevertheless serious gaze, the performer sits in the lower left hand corner.  Unlike many of his characters, most of his body is invisible to the viewer.  He adopts the quintessential image of respectability with an erect posture and a full-suit consisting of a jacket, vest, white collared shirt and a bowtie.  In contrast, the other vignettes suggest an affinity for music, visually restating the stereotype of an inherent inclination in blacks for music.  This juxtaposition sets up a contrast that attempts to carefully delineate dissimilarities between the man and his masks.

Reality Check

Chester Harding - Self Portrait - 1860

Chester Harding (1792-1866), Self-Portrait, c.1860

Chester Harding was a self-taught portrait painter. He was born in Massachusetts in 1792. Harding spent his early adult years in the state of New York, struggling to earn a living as a cabinet maker. In debt, he fled with his wife and child to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where an acquaintance suggested he open a sign-painter¹s shop.  A traveling portrait painter came through town and painted pictures of Harding and his wife. Harding was fascinated with the idea of portraiture and used his work paints to create a picture of his wife. The portrait turned out surprisingly well. Portrait orders rolled in, and Harding saved enough money to afford classes at the Pennsylvania Academy of Design. He traveled and painted portraits the remainder of his life. Harding spent a great deal of time in St. Louis, Washington, DC, London, and Boston.  Charles Harding painted many legendary faces. Other famous pictures include portraits of Chief Justice John Marshall and Civil War Major General William T. Sherman.

(Source: http://shs.umsystem.edu/famousmissourians/explorers/dboone/harding.html)