Walter, Thomas Ustick (1803-1887)
Thomas Ustick Walter is widely recognized as the leading American architect of the mid-nineteenth century. Born in Philadelphia, Walter's many buildings here include Moyamensing Prison, Girard College, Andalusia and Portico Row. He is best remembered as the architect of the dome and wings of the United States Capitol-the most symbolically important and controversial building in the United States. Late in life he made major contributions to the design and decoration of the Philadelphia City Hall. This portrait of the architect shows him at the start of his prolific career. Behind him are visible a fluted column at Girard College and a distant view of the Philadelphia County Prison at Moyamensing. Both were under construction when the portrait was completed. A receipt in the amount of $180 for painting “Portraits of wife & self” survives in the Architect’s papers at the Athenæum.
21" x 25"
Oil on canvas; gilt frame
Thomas Ustick Walter Collection, The Athenaeum of Philadelphia