Sarah Walsh (Mrs. Richard Varick) DeWitt (1806-1842)

Attributed to Maria Louisa Wagner (1816-1888)
Date: 1840-1842
Medium: Watercolor on ivory in brass mat
Dimensions: 4 1/4 H x 3 1/2 W (rectangular ivory panel)
Credit: Bequest of Miss Sarah Walsh DeWitt, daughter of the subject
Accession Number: 1924.1.6
Comments: Throughout the first half of the nineteenth century, Albany residents commissioned portrait miniatures. Among the best-known area painters of miniatures were Anson Dickinson and the brother-and-sister team of Daniel Wagner and Maria Louisa Wagner. This portrait is attributed to Maria Louisa Wagner, who began as an itinerant painter and eventually gained national prominence. The sitter tragically died twenty-one days after the birth of her child, who had survived only one day. It has been suggested that this miniature was posthumous, commissioned as a mourning piece