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One hundred years after George Washington’s birth, John Gadsby Chapman painted a series of romantic landscapes depicting historic sites from the first president’s life. View these nine spectacular scenes from George Washington's life in the Donald W. Reynolds Museum and Education Center's Elizabeth and Stanley de Forest Scott Daily Life gallery.

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Nine unique paintings by the Virginia born artist John Gadsby Chapman (1808-1889) illustrating landscape scenes important to George Washington’s biography are on view in the Donald W. Reynolds Museum and Education Center starting February 13. The series begins with the site of Washington’s birth at the Pope’s Creek Plantation in Westmoreland County, continues through the site of the Battle of Yorktown, and concludes with scenes of Mount Vernon including the bedchamber in which Washington died and the new tomb in which he was interred in 1831.

Chapman exhibited seven of these paintings at the National Academy of Design in New York City during the summer of 1835. Later, nine of the paintings were acquired by James Kirke Paulding (1778-1860), the New York author and onetime Secretary of the Navy, who illustrated two of the works in his 1835 biography of George Washington.

These paintings are on loan to Mount Vernon from the Wethersfield Estate, located near Poughkeepsie, New York, which was the home of Chauncey Stillman. He was an investor, philanthropist, and patron of the arts. The estate is now a museum open to the public during the summer and boasts five acres of Italianate Gardens on a larger estate of 1,200 acres.

Exhibit Dates

February 13, 2015-May 30, 2016

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Included with general admission