William Stevens Perry

The Episcopate in America (Classic Reprint)


William Stevens Perry
   - The Episcopate in America (Classic Reprint)

Excerpt from The Episcopate in America

The interest surrounding the first complete collection of photographs of American bishops published warrants a brief recital of the difficulties involved in gathering them.

The aim to secure the best, as well as the latest, likeness had frequently to be limited to securing any likeness at all; for certain of the bishops never sat for portraits. It is generally believed, for example, that no portrait was ever made of Bishop Dehon, although a very rare silhouette exists. By diligent searching, however, a poor photograph was discovered, from which a pen-and-ink drawing was made, which is reproduced on page 30. Neither Mr. J. Pierpont Morgan's very full collection, nor any other that we know of, possesses a photograph of this prelate. Bishop Madison was never known to have sat for a portrait, and tradition says that the painting of that diocesan now in the possession of Mrs. S. M. Chamberlayne, of Richmond, Va. (through whose kind permission we secured a photograph from this painting), is in reality a portrait of his daughter, who strongly resembled him, taken after her father's death. Bishop Whittingham's portrait was not painted during his lifetime, although a daguerreotype was taken about 1845. Mrs. Rollinson Colburn, of Washington, D. C., a personal friend of Bishop Whittingham, made pencil-sketches of him in 1871, while he was visiting at her home, from which a large (copyright) portrait was painted after his death, in 1879. Huntington painted his portrait from the old daguerreotype; but as this represents the bishop in his younger days, it has been thought well to photograph the very excellent likeness by Mrs. Colburn, which she has generously allowed us to do. The painting was praised by Archbishop Trench and Bishop Pinkney, and is now reproduced for the first time, Brand, in his biography of Whittingham, having made use of Huntington's work.

We are also indebted to another member of this family - Miss Colburn - for our photographs of Bishops Green and Pinkney, taken from portraits painted by her, and truer in representation than hitherto published ones.

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