This pastel portrait is by a skillful, unknown artist who was
perhaps British trained.
The identity of the sitter is known from an inscription in pencil
on the reverse in a 19th c. hand: "Hugh Henderson's likeness
Mrs. Sarah C. Gerrish's grandfather Hugh Henderson/Born in Scotland.
Merchant in New York in 1778. Married Hannah Sheafe of Portsmouth,
NH May 11th 1772. Died August 4th 1794. Aged 47 years. R.F. Gerrish,
Kittery Pt., ME"
A 6" x 9" framed certificate of Mr. Henderson's membership
in the St. Andrews Club of New York, dated November 30, 1784
and signed by Robert Livingston, stays with the portrait.
The portrait is under 18th century glass, as confirmed by Mary
Higgins, a conservator who specializes in glass. The top right
corner, visible within the site opening of the painting, is rounded.
According to Higgins, this is typical of blown glass and does
not represent breakage or the original shape of the work. Higgins
repaired a 12 break in the lower right quadrant of the
glass that is very slightly visible to the naked eye.
The frame is also likely to be period.
Provenance: Charles Garrish to Harry Arons Antiques, Ansonia,
CN to Lilian Blankley Cogan, Farmington, CN to Anne Frances Moore