The Princeton loan is one of our two Thomas Sully portraits of Rebecca Gratz (we lovingly refer to her as "Rebecca without the hat"). She is normally on display in our parlor, so if you come visit us while she's gone you'll be able to check out a portrait of her father, Michael Gratz, by Jane Sully Darley, that we've temporarily moved into her space. The Darley painting is fascinating because we also own the Sully painting it was copied from and seeing both versions of Michael Gratz in the parlor together is really interesting.
|Thomas Sully, portrait of Rebecca Gratz. Phialdelphia 1831. Collection of the Rosenbach 1954.1936|
As Rebecca traveled north, two of our documents related to Civil War Alexandria headed to an exhibit at the Alexandria Archaeology Museum. This is a small, but fascinating, museum located inside the famous Torpedo Factory art center. One of the items that they are borrowing is a personal favorite of mine: a letter from the Civil War spy Rose O'Neal Greenhow, with a sketch of Fort Ellsworth (part of the defenses on Shuter's Hill) on the interior.
|Rose O’Neal Greenhow , Message from Mrs. Greenhow of Washington D.C. . 1861. Collection of the Rosenbach AMs 1168/11|
|Rose O’Neal Greenhow , Message from Mrs. Greenhow of Washington D.C. 1861. Collection of the Rosenbach AMs 1168/11|
The other item we lent is a hand-drawn map, from an unknown hand, of the defenses of Arlington Heights, which includes Alexandria and Fort Ellsworth at the lower left.
|Sketch of Arlington Heights. Collection of the Rosenbach AMs 1168/11|
So if you are positioned to check out either of these exhibits, please do and let us know your thoughts. Either way, it's a real pleasure to be able to contribute to the work of other institutions and reach more people through these kinds of loans.
Kathy Haas is the Associate Curator at the Rosenbach and the primary poster at the Rosen-Blog.