In the spring of 1772, Charles Willson Peale visited Mount Vernon and painted miniatures of Martha Washington's children, John "Jacky" and Martha "Patsy" Parke Custis. At Jacky's insistence Martha's likeness was also captured, resulting in the earliest known depiction of her as Washington's wife. It shows her wearing a lilac-colored gown, pearl choker, and jeweled ornament in her hair. In the late-eighteenth century, the miniature of Martha was remounted into a pendant with a later copy of Peale's miniature of Jacky on its reverse. Although the posthumous portrait is based on the 1772 original, the sitter's clothing post-dates his lifetime, effectively bringing his memory into the present. More


1772; refashioned c. 1790




Ivory, gold, copper alloy, glass, watercolor


Overall: 2 3/8 in. x 1 13/16 in. (6.05 cm x 4.6 cm)
Other (A: ivory): 1 1/2 in. x 1 1/4 in. (3.81 cm x 3.1 cm)
Other (B: ivory): 1 3/4 in. x 1 1/2 in. (4.37 cm x 3.81 cm)


Purchase, 1956

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.
Buy Tickets What to See Calendar Shop Restaurant Donate Membership
Estate Hours

Open today from 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

iconDirections & Parking
buy tickets online & save