Zedekiah Belknap (American, 1781-1858)
Lot of Two Portraits: Mr. and Mrs. Jonathan Richardson. The portrait of Mr. Richardson inscribed in the artist's hand on the reverse: "The Portrait of Mr. Jonathan Richardson aged 47 yrs. weight 237 lb./ Z. Belknap pinxt/ AD. 1829." Both identified on presentation plaques and on labels from R. H. Love Galleries, Chicago. Oil on panel, 27 x 22 3/4 in., in later mahogany veneer frames with gilt liners. Condition: Good, minor retouch.
Exhibited: Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Center, Williamsburg, Virginia, May 8-June 26, 1977, New Hampshire Historical Society, Concord, New Hampshire, July 1-August 28, 1977, Old Sturbridge, Sturbridge, Massachusetts, September 1-October 30, 1977.
Literature: Elizabeth R. Mankin, "Zedekiah Belknap (1781-1858): Itinerant New England Portrait Painter", The Magazine Antiques, November, 1976, pp. 1056-1070.
Note: Zedekiah Belknap was born in 1781 in what is now Auburn, Massachusetts. Following his graduation from Dartmouth College in 1807, he became a portrait painter working throughout Vermont, New Hampshire, and Massachusetts. His style changed considerably in the forty-one years he was known to have painted. He ended his painting career in Wethersfield, Connecticut, in 1848.