Rachel Brewer Peale and Baby Eleanor, ca. 1791
Charles Willson Peale (American, 1741–1827)
Watercolor on ivory; 2 9/16 x 2 1/16 in. (6.5 x 5.2 cm)
Gift of Gloria Manney, 2006 (2006.235.127)
In 1771, Peale painted a large portrait (whereabouts unknown) of his wife, Rachel (1744–1790), with their third child, Eleanor (1770–1773), to celebrate the child's first year of life. Their first two children had died in infancy. At the time, the artist wrote to his friend Edmond Jenings, "I have a fond Wife and Child and more coming, which my success in the Art I hope will enable me to provide for." Twenty years later, after Rachel's death, Peale copied the portrait in small format as a token of his affection for her.