Portrait of Martha D. Holland Trent (Mrs. Thomas Trent, Jr.) (1801-1850) and her daughter, Joella Flood Trent [later, Mrs. Joseph Barrett](1836-?)
Origin: America, Virginia, Appomattox County
Unframed: 36 7/8 x 31 1/8in. (93.7 x 79.1cm) and Framed: 44 13/16 x 39 1/16 x 2 1/4in.
Oil on very fine tabby-weave canvas, painted and gilded wood frame. The painting strainers are est. as hard pine and the frame as soft pine.
Gift of Thomas R. Terry in memory of Joseph B. and Mary Featherston Terry
Acc. No. 2002.100.2
A double portrait of a seated woman with a young girl on her lap, the woman turned slightly towards the viewer's left, the girl slightly towards the viewer's right. The woman's proper right arm encircles and supports the child, her proper right hand at the girl's waist; her proper left arm is held at waist level, her hand extending a prig of flowers towards the child. The girl reaches for the sprig with her proper right hand; the child's proper left arm is largely hidden by the woman's hand and the flower sprig. The woman wears a black dress with long sleeves that are very full above the elbow, also a wide white lace collar with wide white lace lappets or streamers. She also wears a sheer white frilled cap, tied with blue ribbons and decorated with blue ribbons at the top. She has black or very dark brown hair and dark brown eyes. The child wears a pink dress having short, gathered sleeves, also a double strand coral necklace. She has wispy pale blonde hair and pale blue eyes. Part of the solid, scrolled back of the woman's chair is visible. The background is a plain, warm-toned, mauve-hued brown.
The 4-inch frame is original; it consists of two sections, a 3 1/4-inch inner gilded cyma recta molding and a 3/4-inch black-painted quarter round outer edge; the inner section is butted or mortised and tenoned, the outer mitred. An irregular 1-inch long remnant of leather is nailed to the back center top strainer. The strainers are nailed directly into the frame. The frame has brass hanging rings on each side of the back about 12 3/4" from the top. (Corresponding holes remain in the companion portrait's frame, but its rings are now missing).
Provenance:This painting descended along with its companion, a double portrait of Capt. Thomas Trent, Jr. (1786-1861) and his son, William Henry Trent (1832-1905). The two paintings descended from the elder subjects to their son, William Henry Trent (shown as the child in the companion painting).
William Henry Trent's " . . . descendants decided in the early 20th century that they did not want them and they put them out in the trash." Their first cousin once removed, Mrs. Robert Emmett Baldwin (Lucie Lillie Featherston) (1881-1968), " . . . was horrified and recovered them." [See note no. 1 below]. When Lucie L. F. Baldwin died, the paintings remained with her husband, Robert Emmett Baldwin (1879-1977); when he died, the paintings came to his nephew-in-law, Joseph B. Terry (d. 1991; Joseph B. Terry's wife, Mary Elizabeth Featherston Terry (1912-1977), had pre-deceased him). When Joseph B. Terry died, the contents of his house in Appomattox, including the two paintings were left to his son, Thomas R. Terry, who becam AARFAM's donor [see note no. 2 below].
(1) Thomas R. Terry to AARFAM, Feb. 25, 2002.
(2) Ibid, plus Thomas R. Terry email to AARFAM of 3/20/02.
Origin: Buckingham (now Appomattox) County, Virginia
Inscription(s):On the reverse of the canvas, in the lower right quadrant, in dark brown (est. iron gall) ink, in script, is: "Joella, Flood, Trent 2 years old/1837". In the lower left quadrant, in much larger, different-styled lettering, in dark (est. black) paint (but now covered with white paint), is: "Martha D./Trent".