Lydia Smith (c. 1808-1810). Gilbert Stuart (American, 1755-1828). Oil on wood.
Stuart went to Boston at the invitation of Massachusetts senator Jonathan Mason, who promised to introduce him to friends, relatives, and associates there. He found patronage among a range of the city’s residents, including Paul Revere and mayor Josiah Quincy as well as younger sitters like Lydia Smith, whose complex portrait reveals her to be an accomplished young lady with both musical and artistic talents.