Recto and Verso: Mary Elizabeth Hickman Rollins

Recto – George Caleb Bingham Mary Elizabeth Hickman was born in Franklin, Missouri, on October 10, 1820, the middle child of the three children of James E. Hickman and Sophia Woodson Hickman. The Bingham family arrived in Franklin from Virginia shortly before her birth. James Hickman and George Caleb Bingham’s father, Henry Vest Bingham, invested in some of the same …

Rediscovered Bingham Portraits: The Dunnicas, Part 2

Rediscovered Bingham Portraits: Connoisseurship Introduction Provenance and art historical research strongly suggested that family lore was true:  George Caleb Bingham painted the heirloom portraits of William Franklin Dunnica and his wife, Martha Jane Shackelford. (See Rediscovered Bingham Portraits: The Dunnicas, Part 1). Would connoisseurship confirm or deny that the portrait pair were rediscovered paintings by Bingham? Context According to art historical research, Bingham painted …

Rediscovered Bingham Portraits: The Dunnicas, Part 1

Rediscovered Bingham Portraits: Art Historical Documentation Introduction Several years ago, images of a pair of antebellum portraits arrived in my inbox: William Franklin Dunnica and Mary Jane Shackelford (Mrs. William F. Dunnica) of Glasgow (Chariton), Missouri. I knew instantly that George Caleb Bingham was the artist. But, as a professional art investigator, I knew the accuracy of a “blink” moment always needs to be tested. …