Greatest American Painters

William Henry Powell (1823 – 1879)

Posted by A. S. Amberson on March 12, 2010

Discovery Of The Mississippi by De Soto

Battle Of Lake Erie

Alexandre Dumas

Washington’s Last Interview With His Mother

George Washington And The Committee Of Congress At Valley Forge

George Washington And The Committee Of Congress At Valley Forge

Scott’s Entry Into Mexico City

The Twenty-Day Siege Of The Mexican City Of Veracruz In March 1847

The Twenty-Day Siege Of The Mexican City Of Veracruz In March 1847

Columbus Before The Council Of Salamanca

Columbus Sighting Land

Columbus Sighting Land

Portrait Of George Law

Portrait Of A Gentleman

General Zachary Taylor At The Battle Of Buena Vista In 1847

The Brigand’s Portrait

The Eviction (Scene From Life In Ireland)

The Eviction (Scene From Life In Ireland)

Albert Gallatin

Charles Louis Tiffany

Woman In A Chair With Book On Lap

Woman In A Chair With Book On Lap


7 Responses to “William Henry Powell (1823 – 1879)”

  1. John Gause said

    I have recently aquired a William Henry Powell portraut of a woman in black and red cape believed to be Emilia Beardsley Wells. Signed and dated 1859. 40×50 oil on canvas. Any idea who this woman is? I cannot seem to find referance to her anywhere.

  2. Renee Huddleston said

    I am looking for a portrait supposedly painted by Powell of Sarah Sturges Buckingham Beecher. Can anyone point me toward it?

    • John Gause said

      I found a reference to a reproduction in a genealogical search but could not find a picture of the reproduction. Do you have any copy? I would like to compare it to my William Henry Powell portrait. email

  3. Roland Jones said

    Given that nearly all Powell’s historical genre paintings have a U.S.nationalist tinge, and that his most famous work celebrates a U.S. naval victory over the old British foe during the war of 1812, it seems nicely ironic that when in 1876 his daughter Fannie came choose a husband, her fancy alighted upon … a British naval officer, George Walter Edward Lloyd!

    That said, at least the artistic genes did subsequently re-assert themselves: their grandson George Lloyd was to become one of the Albany Symphony Orchestra’s most favoured modern composers.

    Roland Jones

    • Roland Jones said

      Some interesting additional material about WHG’s daughter Fannie will be found here, together with helpful onward refs:

      — which is a blog post reviewing an exhibition about women artists who have worked in Cornwall over the years.

      This is a brief extract:

      “William Henry Powell … was a keen opera-goer and encouraged Frances to train as an opera singer. She subsequently trained as an artist and met her husband, Walter Lloyd, while they were both studying in Paris in the 1880s. They had two sons, the elder of whom, Eugene, died in infancy. It is thought that this tragedy prompted Frances’ interest in mysticism. Walter, who was very much older than his wife, died of cholera [at Rome] in 1889, after only six years of marriage. The young widow moved to England with her surviving son, William, who became a musician and artist.”

      The post goes on to reproduce two accomplished — and rather intriguing — pictures that she painted while living in Cornwall.

      Roland Jones

    • Roland Jones said

      As a footnote to the foregoing, some useful basic facts about the career of WHP’s daughter Fannie Lloyd will be found in the Cornwall Artists Index, here:

      Five more examples of her work will be accessible online until June 2014 as part of an online gallery hosted on the BBC’s website (last images in a set of 13). Hypertext link:

      Roland Jones

  4. Fannie Powell painted mostly in tempera, after studying in St Ives with Belgian artist Louis Recklebus. The George Lloyd archive has a few dozen of her smaller tempera paintings, and also three of the larger mystical works. Also various scrapbooks and sketch books of William Henry Powell himself. Family lore has it that W H Powell studied with Samuel Morse, and there are two Morse portraits in the archive – Mrs Anne Wagner and Henry Cowing. Any information concerning dates and subjects of W H Powell’s itinerant portrait work before he embarked upon large historical works would be gratefully received. William Lloyd

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