Bowdoin College Museum of Art

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Artist

Gilbert Stuart (North Kingstown, Rhode Island, 1755 - 1828, Boston, Massachusetts)

Title

Phebe Lord (Mrs. Thomas C. Upham)

Creation Date

ca. 1823

Century

19th century

Dimensions

30 7/16 in. x 25 1/2 in. (77.31 cm x 64.77 cm)

Object Type

painting

Creation Place

North America, United States

Medium and Support

oil on canvas

Credit Line

Gift of Edward D. Jameson

Copyright

Public Domain

Accession Number

1919.1
In his compelling portrait of twenty-year-old Phebe Lord, garbed in a fashionable dress and an embroidered scarlet shawl, Gilbert Stuart captures her determined gaze, suggesting a woman of keen intellect and commitment to principle. A Kennebunkport, Maine, native and the daughter of a wealthy ship owner, she married Thomas C. Upham in 1825 and moved to Brunswick, where Upham served as Professor of Mental and Moral Philosophy. An early supporter of the antislavery movement, Phebe befriended novelist Harriet Beecher Stowe, author of Uncle Tom’s Cabin. An active member of the First Parish Church, Phebe organized prayer meetings and lobbied for women’s voting rights. She also wrote several books on religion and theology, including a pamphlet highlighting the piety of the formerly enslaved woman Phebe Ann Jacobs, who was also a First Parish Church member.

Keywords: portraits  

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