James Hemings

Portrait by Artist to Come

QUICK FACTS
BORN:
1765 in Guinea, Cumberland County, Virginia
  DIED:
1801 in Baltimore, Maryland

           

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Portrait to come. See entry in Wikipedia.

 

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Charles Willson Peale, despite his devotion to the taxonomic and contemplative majesty of the natural world, nevertheless loved novelties and used all sorts of amusements to attract customers to his museum. He eventually resorted to hiring a popular musical performer who played five different instruments simultaneously, using all parts of his body. Following Peale’s death the museum passed into the enterprising hands of P. T. Barnum, becoming part of his traveling circus — a romantic ending for an Enlightenment institution.

Gordon S. Wood
Empire of Liberty: A History of the Early Republic, 1789–1815 (2009)