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New England artist William Matthew Prior painted this distinctive view of Mount Vernon, one of a group of at least thirteen, in the mid-nineteenth century. Now generally considered a folk artist, Prior structured the sale of his paintings based on their degree of finish. Prior based his Mount Vernon views on several widely-published engravings after W.H. Brooke featuring the new tomb, old tomb and mansion. This unusual painting combines elements from two substantially different engravings after Brooke with the Birds-Eye View of Mount Vernon chromolithograph published by G. and F. Bill in 1859 after the Mount Vernon Ladies Association acquired the property. The resulting image is an entirely invented landscape, with dual—and dueling—perspectives. More


c. 1859




Oil on canvas; gilt wood; glass


Overall (H x W x D): 26 5/8 in. × 32 5/8 in. × 3 1/2 in. (67.63 cm × 82.87 cm × 8.89 cm)
Other (H x W Sight): 18 3/4 in. × 25 in. (47.63 cm × 63.5 cm)


Purchase, 1993

Object Number



Mount Vernon's object research is ongoing and information about this object is subject to change. For information on image use and reproductions, click here.
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