SOLD! for $31,200.00.
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- Low Estimate: $4,000.00
- High Estimate: $4,400.00
- Realized: $31,200.00
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East Tennessee oil on fabric portrait of Judge John A. McKinney (1781-1845) attributed to Samuel Shaver (TN, 1816-1878). The subject is attired in a dark suit and gold waistcoat and depicted seated in the "Napoleonic" pose. Housed in a carved mahogany veneer wood frame. Sight: 27 1/2" H x 24" W. Framed: 34" H x 30 1/2" W. Note: This portrait is illustrated in the Tennessee Portrait Project and referenced in "Portraits in Tennessee Before 1866," page 78, entry #318. Note: Family history states that this portrait was completed circa 1842, making it one of the earliest known Shaver attributed portraits. Biography of the sitter: John Augustine McKinney emigrated from Ireland to the United States in 1800. He married Elizabeth Ayer and moved to Rogersville, Tennessee to practice law. McKinney was a successful lawyer and landowner and built many prominent structures in Rogersville. In 1824-1825, he built the McKinney Tavern House which hosted three U.S. Presidents including Jackson, Polk, and Johnson. The tavern was eventually renamed The Hale Springs Inn which was famous for being the oldest, continuously run Inn in the state of Tennessee. McKinney tried cases in Hawkins, Hancock, Sullivan, Washington, Greene, Grainger, Claiborne, Campbell, and Union Counties. He was appointed U.S. District Attorney by President John Quincy Adams and was chosen to represent his County in the State Constitutional Convention in 1834. Biography of the artist (Courtesy of James C. Kelly, Virginia Historical Society) Portraitist Samuel M. Shaver was born in Sullivan County, the son of David Shaver and Catherine (Barringer) Shaver. He may have been influenced by William Harrison Scarborough (1812-1871), a native-born Tennessee artist, four years Shaver's senior, who did portraits of Shaver's relatives. Shaver's earliest known painting dates to 1845, but he was probably painting before that time. For the next quarter-century, he was East Tennessee's standard portraitist. In 1851 Shaver was a professor of drawing and painting at the Odd Fellows Female Institute in Rogersville. In 1852 he advertised in Greeneville and Knoxville papers; for several years thereafter his whereabouts are unknown. The death of his first wife in January 1856 recalled him to Rogersville, where he remained until the Civil War. At the outset of the war, Shaver moved to Knoxville, where he became one of the founders of the East Tennessee Art Association. From 1863 to 1868 Shaver lived and worked near Russellville. About 1868 he joined his mother-in-law and family in Jerseyville, Illinois, near St. Louis, where he continued painting. He died June 21, 1878. The Estate of Alice Wright Summers Hale, Rogersville, TN. Condition: Conserved in the winter of 1989-90 by Cumberland Art Conservation in Nashville, TN. Relined with some light inpainting to subject's forehead and new wax coating. A black light photo is included and an abbreviated conservation report is en verso of painting.