I Don't Understand, Je Ne Comprends Pas, No Entiendo

It is spring now, and I thought the quarrel with that wanna-be, silhouette expert from Texas, was over and done with. But I guess not, as she keeps at it on her little blog. She keeps picking sandgrain tidbits of nothing and tries to make something out of it. Why is she making a fool of herself?  I don't understand.

As for myself, I need no introduction, as my nine years of blogging speaks for itself. I write about antique silhouettes for fun and pass on new information about them to help collectors and dealers; it is one of my hobbies. She sells silhouettes for a living, I don't. So my writings are unbiased.

That DEALER from Texas:

First, she writes very little on the subject (her silhouette artists bio is a laugh...she took them straight out of reference books without giving them any credits). Second, she is unable to tell fakes and reproductions from genuine 19th century silhouettes. Third, most of what she knows were learned by reading my blogs. Fourth, she still bases her little opinions on an outdated 1928 book by Alice van Leer Carrick. (By the way, Carrick's book is excellent, but my nine years of writing takes it way beyond her investigation. Carrick started it, and I am continuing it.)

So, what is this Texas dealer? She is a pothole, a menace for all to avoid. If some of you fall into it, this pothole gets bigger and bigger. Save costly alignment and go around that nuisance. What a wanna-be is what a wanna-be does. Spring is finally here. Get over it and move on!


20th Century Chapman Silhouette
This Chapman is NOT the early 19th century Moses Chapman's work. It is 20th century. I have never seen an embossed (signed) 19th century Chapman in my life. Has anyone seen one? I have never even heard of one. In addition, 19th century cutters NEVER cut profiles this way.
She and I exchanged our views on my blogs about this subject. Check the blog post dated August, 24, 2010 and others for related content. There she writes:
"And, having had a silhouette with the “Chapman Siccauit” stamp and also being quite knowledgeable and experience with early silhouettes, I am quite certain that the stamp was used by a 19th century silhouettist. You have not convinced me to discount the “Chapman Sicciaut” stamp in all cases."
Her statement above is pure xxxx: "quite knowledgeable and experience with early silhouettes"? If any of the readers truly believe this silhouette is from the early 1800s feel free to join her club. At one time, I, too, believed it was from the 19th century. As soon as I found out it was NOT a 19thc work, I revised me views, wrote about it, and even sold it as a 20th century silhouette. I lost quite a bit on that deal. That's what I got from being stupid and having wishful thoughts.


Henry Williams Silhouette

I've covered plenty about this sort of 20th century silhouettes. These silhouettes are NOT 19th century. For a lot more about these fake WILLIAMS embossing, read my past posts. Originally from Hindman auction, Oct., 4, 2009, $400. It now  belongs to...unless she already sold it.

Three Styles of William Bache Silhouettes

 He worked in three disctinct styles: plain hollow-cut, hollow-cut with embellishment on black backing paper, fully painted. There are many fakes of all three styles out there. His authentic embossing stamp is very well made (see photo). It measures 21mm from one point to another. Fake stamps are quite crude and sizes differ widely. So if you don't know what to look for with his silhouettes, at least know what an authentic stamp measures and looks like. Bache had a tendency to stamp very close to bustline. So if you see a stamp that is distant from the bustline, you should examine further.

Let me give you another advice on hollow-cut with embellishment on black backing paper style. If you are not sure of the embossment, open the back of the frame. Every fake I examined used a common black construction paper. It is black on both sides. This is not to say that one-sided black paper fake does not exist. It's just I have never seen one. Bache only used his handmade paper, which was black on one side only. I illustrate here two photos of fakes. They look alike, but they are different. Do you know who owns them as genuine examples? They belong to HER. I kid you not, unless she already sold them.
I hope the readers were able to learn something new today. This is what we do!


This went for $153.50.
It would have been a super buy if a genuine Doyle. Is it?

Rare American 19th Cent Silhouette Brig General Simon Kenton 1813 Signed

Someone paid $516 for this! The seller gives biographical info of this sitter and then writes:

Dated 1813 and has the original artist stamp of what appears to be "JW"
Frame measures approximately 5 5/8" tall by 5 1/8" wide

I am going to wait until we go stealth next weekend to tell you what I know about this silhouette for registered readers only. 


Marion Beasley Silhouettes and Portraits
NONE of the works done by Marion Beasley I've seen are from the 19th century. They are all 20th century. There is one in the collection of Winterthur Museum. You could just google ["marion beasley" winterthur]. They attribute this crap to  "W. H. BROWN" and lists "Marion Beasley/ Charleston, S.C./ 1845" as its title. They also add, "Place of Origin: Charleston, Charleston, South Carolina, South, United States, North America; Date: 1845; Materials: Paper (wove) Ink, Wash; Object Number: 2003.0013.047 A."
That all sound so legit. Nobody will question the Winterthur, right? People will see this work and probably say, "Wow, this work is so appealing, thanks to Winterthur we are able to appreciate this beauty." Nah, not me. I would say, "Who the heck is in charge over there, best start reading my blogs."
How about Bonham's auctions? Do you trust them? That's a big name. I guess they are good for something, but they ain't worth a XXXX when it comes to antique American silhouettes. They had a Marion Beasley, too, in a lot of eight.
You can just google ["marion beasley" bomhams] to see photos of all eight silhouettes, including the much coveted Marion Beasley. Someone who never reads my blogs paid $687 for them. So what's wrong with that? Nothing's wrong with that, except NONE OF THOSE EIGHT SILHOUETTES ARE GENUINE. This broken-down lot has been appearing on eBay lately. Someone just paid $178 for this Beasley (ex-Bonham's).
This seller writes:
Dated 1835 Charleston S.C. signed paper cut framed silhouette
Offered here without reserve is this delightful paper cut silhouette signed by Marion Beasley of Charleston South Carolina and dated May 9, 1835.  There are no apologies, so my pictures tell the whole sotre: Measurements are 5 1/2" x 4 1/2".
So, these fakes go from one place to another, and then to another, and to another and.... Sooner or later some of them end up in museum collections. Let's face it: museums have a lot of stuff, good stuff is mixed-in with the bad, the caretakers are knowledgeable and well-versed on many stuff. However, there are no experts there on antique American silhouettes. Some may think they are, but that's about it...they just THINK they are. It's the same with auction houses and the so-called "specialists." Auction houses never guarantee the authenticity of what they sell to begin with; they leave that up to the buyers.
 When it comes to antique American silhouettes, our blogs set the trend. We tell like it is. We are not afraid to speak the truth. We try to protect potential buyers of antique American silhouettes. BUT, if any of you had already purchased a fake silhouette, that's just tough luck. That is what you deserve for not reading our blogs. Laziness and the lack of curiousness gotcha!  



Fake William King Silhouettes

We covered these fake KING silhouettes a number of times. This will be our last. If you guys keep buying these fakes as genuine, more power to the sellers from now on. I will just blame YOU, the buyers, for being uncurious and lazy about antique silhouettes. This pair brought $189. The seller writes:

Pair early 19th C framed paper cut silhouettes embossed KING

Offered here without reserve is this pair of early 19th century paper cut silhouettes, both with the background paper embossed KING.  Both, moreover, appear to be housed in thier original frames.  Each silhouette measures 5 1/4" x 4 1/2" and are in overall good condition with some slight staining to the background paper ... nothing obtrusive but its there.



Pair of DOYLE Silhouettes
This pair got $91. Of course, these silhouettes are not from the 19th century. They are just modern trinkets.
The seller writes:
Pair signed early 19th C Doyle paper cut silhouettes, original frames
Offered here without reserve is this pair of early 19th C paper cut silhouettes with ink accents housed in their original frames and signed Doyle,  Each measures 5 3/4" x 4 3/4".  The sole apology is a slight bit of deterioration to the eglomise of on the glass of the lady.  Beyond this my pictures tell the whole story of this excellent pair of silhouettes.


Robert Fulton Silhouette

This silhouette sold for $585. Yup, this sitter could be Robert Fulton, but which Robert Fulton is he? I am sure there were many hundreds by that name. In this case, however, it is moot, as this silhouette was not cut by Jarvis. It was not done in 1809 or even in the 19th century. This is a very typical 20th work. This artist did so many historical figures, it is mind bogling. Many of them are nicely done, too. If someone liked this one, what's a spare change like $585. That's peanuts!

The seller writes:

You are bidding on a beautiful rare antique 1809 signed Robert Fulton Silhouette by John Wesley Jarvis! This is an amazing old piece. It appears the body was cut from some sort of textured paper and the hair and other imbelishments were done by pen and ink. There was a picture with it when I purchased it that stated on the back it was appraised by Sotheby Auction in 1980 for $750. I picked this up at a recent estate sale. The pictures say the rest.



I tell you, this blog has gotten so big even I don't know what is where, and I sure can't remember most of what I wrote. I have this "thingy." I never re-read anything after I publish. Once it's done, it's done and over with.

Anyways, someone wrote me today and told me the following archive is excellent. I scrolled thru it. Seems very decent, mostly about silhouette stamps. This is the link:
By the way, that large KING stamp is a 20th century fake. I am 100% on it, just like those WILLIAMS stamp.


Genuine Painted Body Silhouettes or Fake?

We found this on eBay. This pair brought $590. Below is the seller's description.



B. M. Jones writes:
I would have bought this pair as genuine, period silhouettes. Frames seem to be period, and they are worth some money. But $450, no. These silhouettes are nicely done, retaining strong shades. This is a folky pair. What worries me is what I am not able to see. Silhouettes are matted for good reasons, and usually those reasons ain't good. What are the sizes of these silhouette papers? How far do the damages extend? If these silhouette papers were large enough to fill the frames, why would anyone mat them, unless, of course, the papers are full of defects. Or were these two silhouettes cut-down to the max?

Silhouette of the man shows obvious paper weakness with fragile spots. It runs into his nose, making his nose appear "broken." Whenever defects run into  sitters' profile, they would be considered serious defects. Silhouette of the woman shows two vertical lines. Are they fold lines? Toning lines? The woman seems to be in good shape based on what I can see. Their values depend on what are, and what are not, behind the mats. The seller writes, "NOT GLUED DOWN." That means the backs were opened for examination. Why, then, were photos not taken of the silhouettes outside of frames? Too many defects? Saw something the seller did not like? I am sure the new owner will have some fun with them.
William Jennys DID NOT Cut White Silhouettes

I have to set the record straight on Jennys, as one inaccurate information could lead people to believe that Jennys cut white silhouettes. When that happens, that false information gets repeated many times over and can end up in catalogs and books as a fact. No matter what anyone claims, Jennys never cut white silhouettes. This link will take you to that article:

We covered this subject in the past. You can access the original post here:

At any rate, to make a long story short, the author of that article claims Jennys cut white silhouettes as a special order of sort, and believes those white silhouettes are not the inside portion of the left-over hollow-cut. He bases his reasoning on "tiny left detail" like falling lock of hair on the forehead etc. He already has one Texas dealer believing it. She writes that "blog guy" (referring to me) is wrong and believes the author of that article because there are no scissor entry cuts on those white silhouettes. Silhouette artists never stabbed the center of paper, or anywhere for that matter, to gain cutting access. They simply applied a sharp knife, smartly, in the bust area and started cutting. They used a combination of knives and scissors. So as you can see, this one false information is already starting to take root. I have to yank out that root before it grows to be a tree.

White silhouettes are left-overs from inside mid-section of a rectangular paper. Some artists gave them to sitters. Some artists discarded them (Moses Williams at Peale's Museum kept them in a barrel). A few others kept them and made albums or scrapbooks with them. William Bache is one of them (will do a post about it soon). That is why Bache albums contain pasted cut-outs that have been blackened. Many people believe he worked in cut-and-paste because his albums contain them. BUT they are NOT cut-and-paste. They are left-overs.

White silhouettes are all left-over cuttings. They are what they are. White cut-outs are many, many times rarer than hollow-cuts. They are cool stuff! The white cut-out illustrated is mine and is attributed to Augustas Day.


WOW! Our Blog is Now 9 Years in the Making!

We covered quite a bit on AMERICAN silhouettes. In fact, we have written more about the subject than ALL articles and books combined and published in the last 100 years. That's a lot! But we ain't done yet. We've barely scratched the surface.

When you access this page, you are looking at a very tiny portion of my blogs. If you were to access everything I've written in the last 9 years through different pages and archives, it will take you more than a weekend to go through them. If the weather is bad and you got nothing better to do, spend a weekend with me. If the weather is good and you are looking for something constructive, do spend a weekend with me. In either case, you will learn a whole lot about antique American silhouettes. Then you can pretend to be one of those so-called, self-professed "experts."

On the sideline: I've been really getting into playing and singing with ukulele lately. Been playing acoustic and electric guitars since I was a kid, but they seem bulky and heavy these days (teenage years have long past). Ukulele works just fine for me. They are light and small, and I can just grab them and start playing.

It's a whole lot of fun. I am looking forward to warm weather. I wanna take my ukuleles to parks. I wanna sing and play. Life is short, very short. Gotta enjoy before we are dead and no more. Life in heaven after we die?? If there is such a place, let me know when you make it there. I will send you my best William King silhouette in best frame by express mail at no charge. On the other hand, if you are one of those folks who will go down-below, where flowers bloom in eternal warmth, I can send you....

Wanna get into ukulele? Drop me a line. I am a self-professed expert on the subject!

Antique 19th Century Silhouettes by Edouart

If you have been searching for unique photos and information about this artist that are not available elsewhere, check out my portraits for sale link on the left pane, or click: What is so unique about my photos there? My photos contain  lots of of close-up details of the backside, where Edouart drew, inscribed, modified, and even strengthened his cutouts by pasting additional pieces of paper onto fragile parts. This is THE ONLY SITE where you can actually see how Edouart "did" his stuff. I own copyright to these photos and every photo that are on my blogs, so please do ask for my permission if you are thinking of reproducing any of them. Note: those Edouart silhouettes are not bunched-up together, so you need to find them.


Rare Printed Silhouette

We thank Bob for the following post! Bob writes:

Found a silhouette today at my favorite Sunday AM weekly flea market that might be of interest to you and your readers.  It is a type discussed previously on this blog.

The head is hollow cut. The bust is block printed, rather than a lithographed.  Furthermore, based upon the examples I own and those I have found in the literature, the lithographed busts are cut and then pasted onto the paper backing from which the silhouette is cut.  The busts which are block printed are not cut and pasted but printed directly onto the paper from which the silhouette is cut.

I've examined the "hair" of my  example very carefully with a loop under a bright light.  I am convinced that it is not an embellishment added using ink, water color or graphite.  It was printed with the bust.  That seems a bit different.

The silhouette is backed with paper that is painted black on one side.
It is housed in a gilt gessoed pine frame which is square nailed together.  The eglomise surround looks "right".  The glass is wonderfully thin and imperfect. It has a thin wood backboard bearing an inscription, "Royal Richardson" in graphite.

There are some obvious condition issues, including a missing corner of the glass and it appears that someone has cut the silhouette round and then attached it to the paper backing with archival tape.  However, judging by shadows, etc, etc, this has all been together for a very long time.  I really do think the frame is original and everything started out together. Even with the condition issues, I purchased the silhouette as it was interesting enough and the price was probably less than the cost of the period frame.

Especially see the entry on this blog of 2/17/12.  Except for the "hair", it appears to be the same printed bust in the example from the CT Historical Society.  For more on this blog about silhouettes with printed busts, see the entries of 7/3/11 and 10/14/12.

Some other references with examples of block printed bodies include Rifken, pages 64-65, example number 24.  Also see "American Folk Portraits: Paintings and Drawings from the AARFAC", pages 245-246, figures 235 and 236.  Of note, see the bust of figure 236.  See your discussion on 10/14/12 about whether Banton used wood block printed busts.  The female bust pictured in figure 235 is virtually identical to the one shown in that posting, too.

B. M. Jones writes:

I like it when collectors (and dealers) do their own research, instead of just asking "what do I have here? can you tell me something about it? kind deal). Bob did a good research here on what he bought.

 His remark about the hair details is interesting. I suppose that is possible, so I checked on mine. My silhouette seems to have hair details drawn with crayon or something similar. It has that thick, shiny, waxy, texture pigment that adheres in chunky flaky way. This must have been a very quick way of adding hair details, as one quick stroke alongside the top of the head would have done it, instead of adding hair-by-hair type detail that would have taken much longer to do.

The frame is certainly period, and the painted glass looks to be a good match to this frame. I don't think the glass is repairable, but it would look a lot better if you would place a black paper behind the fracture (see photo I created). Bob got lucky with it cause the fracture does not penetrate deep into the gold accents; it only brushes off the very top of one. Trick: if you were to cut a black mat so that it would cover the entire glass, except for the opening of course, minor loss of the black paint, along with rubs and light shades of black, can be completely covered up. Believe me, when that's done the gold accents would standout like bright stars on very dark night. It would look outstanding!

Yes, this silhouette has been in this frame for a long (how does one define "long"?) time. The frame is certainly period, but it is not the original frame. There is no question that this silhouette was originally in an oval frame, most likely brass-over-wood frame. My guess that it was reframed when someone added that tape to the backside of the silhouette. I bet you the glass was not broken then. It would be interesting to look at the toning of the black paper to see how the shades differ between the opening of the hollow-cut area and where light did not penetrate through.

I am sure there exit "unfinished" silhouettes of this type somewhere, where the printing is complete, with or without the hair details, but without the hollow-cutting of the head. Of course, no period fool would frame such a headless animal. So, if they do exist, where would one likely find one? That's an interesting thought to ponder. Furthermore, I always believed some of the silhouette artists carted around a bunch of pre-cut silhouettes, and I mean a complete finished silhouettes. Most people don't know what their sideviews (profiles) look like, and I am one of them. When I look at a mirror, I see my frontal view. Thousands of people have seen my profile, expect Uncle Doddy here.

When I was about ten or so, a friend of mine said something quite peculiar to me: I wish I could see myself from the eyes of others. So I told him to look at a mirror. His reply was that it is not the same, as he would then be seeing himself through his eyes. What a philosopher! I was more into pinball machines then and never did understand what he was trying to say until I was much older, and I mean much, much older!

A handful of New England silhouette artists like Chamberlain and Banton, just to mention a few, who worked mostly the backwoods of Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine, share very similar details in style and manner of hollow-cutting. I just can't believe they worked as independent artists. Some of them may have been peddlers and tinkers, who bought a series of pre-cut silhouettes that were cut from set templates by a jobber. Who that jobber is, I am not 100% but believe that artist to be Banton. I say that because his silhouettes with his embossment are known; I owned two such rarities. As for others, none is found with their embossment. Peddlers and tinkers don't need embossing dies.

Another interesting point to look at is the value of money. Common hollow-cut silhouettes from 1800-1830 or so would have cost 25-50 cents for a pair and a double-pair, depending on how much artists wanted your business in the cities. In the backwoods, they could get away with a single hollow-cut because of lack of competition. I remember I used to get a set of four photos at a photo booth in Woolworth in 1970 for a quarter. Minimum wage then was $1.60. So, four photos for a quarter was cheap, even for this poor kid.

Internet sites say the value of a quarter in 1800 is equal to about $3.00 today, based on inflation. That figure is a bigger lie than the Gulf of Tonkin and the USS Maine incidents. A silver dollar was only worth $12 in today's money back then?? That's like saying average commoner earned five silver dollars a day back then, based on the so-called inflation rate. Forget those numbers! A quarter back then was worth a lot, a lot more than today's $3.00. So, although silhouettes were affordable by the middle-class, they were not cheap, and, certainly, silhouettes were not affordable to those who "scraped" for a living. Instead of buying some useless images of what-the-heck-for, they would have invested in "spirits," not the blessing Holy Spirit kind, although many have blessed such distilled spirits just the same. If those four-for-a-quarter photos costs me ten bucks today, I would not get into that booth. Heck, that's a price of a bottle of cheap bourbon. I would bless this spirit just as they did back then, amen!

Seriously, I believe I am the only one on this planet who really "thinks, figures things out, researches, and forms a definitive conclusion" on antique American silhouettes. Or is it that bottle of $10.00 bourbon that's doing all the tricks for me? You guys and gals can form your own little opinions.


Rufus Kendall Cummings Silhouette Artist

Not much is known about this so-called "profilist." I've seen his works from time to time and always thought he was British. He worked in copy-and-paste style, used card backing, and often hilighted the figures. His finished silhouettes are quite good and resemble those typical British silhouettes of the time in style: nice but nothing special happening. For that reason, I never paid any attention to Cummings in the past. He is, however, very special, as you will see. He is one of those silhouette artists that came and went without ever been discovered, until today that is. We will expose him here and in the future, throughout this blog as we learn more about him.

I am sure Cummings advertised in local Boston newspapers, but I have yet to find one, as this is a new project in its infancy. However, I was able to find another form of his advertisement from the 1840s: a broadside. WorldCat shows six holdings (original? digital copy?) of this broadside measuring 18 x 23cm. With a printed area, including ornamental border, it measures 15.7 x 13.7 cm, according to WorldCat. If I were writing a research paper, I would contact those libraries and will get a digital copy of it, but not here for this purpose. I just wanted the readers to know such broadside exists.

Profiles. : Mr. R.K. Cummings, most respectfully informs the public that having devoted many years in the study and practice of the art of profile cutting, he is now enabled to present to every one who will honor him with a trial, with as accurate, or well finished profile as can possibly be procured in the country. ...

Because of Cummings' British style of silhouettes, I am sure he studied in England or was instructed by a British artist here in America. His name stamp (stencil?), "By R. K. Cummings / Profilist" on the backside of the card suggests he mimicked the stamps used by Hubard and Hankes, who were of British origin working in America. Prior to painting and cutting silhouettes in the 1840s, he must have worked in a limited number of miniature portraits, as one was submitted for exhibit to the Massachusetts Charitable Mechanic Association for the year 1837.

Mary Alice Wisewell, in one of the chapters of Marcus Whitman's memoir, WHITMAN RIDES 1842–1843, writes:

We are told that while in Boston Whitman had his silhouette drawn by a Mr. R. K. Cummings. Whitman considered the result so unsatisfactory that he did not even get a copy for his mother. Daguerreotypes were then being made in Boston, but the cheapest, as then advertised in the daily papers, cost $3.50. No doubt Whitman felt that this was more than he could afford.

Whitman's comment of  the silhouette being "so unsatisfactory" is difficult to imagine. I do not ever recall seeing a terrible work by Cummings. Some were surely better than others, but every work I have seen was at least average to above average in quality. When one considers Cummings an American born silhouettist, he was a lot better than most other American sihouettists of the 19th century. I know he met Edouart in Boston, as Edouart cut a figure of Cummings in November 13, 1841.

Did Cummings learn any tricks of the trade from Edouart? I am sure he did, even if it were in a limited way. I believe Cummings learned a trick or two from Hubard as well. Cummings was a local Boston area boy, born on May 29, 1811 and died there on March 26, 1864. Is he the same Rufus Cummings who appears as a piano-forte maker and polisher in Boston directories from 1841 through 1849? I am sure he had other trades beside cutting silhouettes to make a living.

X'mas is Near but....

This thing sold for $180. I realize there are some gift buying going on, but my jaws would have dropped if I had gotten this one as a gift. Of course, I would thank the giver. What would I do with it? Use it as a coaster, perhaps. Can anyone think of any other uses for this item?

Seller writes:


You are bidding on a beautiful rare antique reverse painted George Washington silhouette! This is an amazing little piece and it is in great conidtion for its age. It is signed and dated though i'm not 100% certain of the date or who the artist was. It looks like it is dated 1758 or 1778 or 1798...i'm really not certain. It is signed very simply with a Y. There is a small curved chip in the glass, see pics, but no other damage as far as I could see. If anyone has any info they can add it would be greatly appreciated! I picked this up at a recent estate sale.



More DEMORS Silhouettes

We like DEMORS, as this artist did original works in the 20th century. Whoever she/he is/was never reproduced or faked any portraits. All are original works of modern art in imitation of 19th century works. So this artist's works are worth something, depending on how good they are.

I have no problem with people offering DEMORS for what they are. BUT when one offers them as genuine early 19th century works of art, it is NOT ok. This seller is so full of it, it makes me sick. AND this clown writes, "We did not research "Demors". That sounds so fishy to me. If this seller had simply googled it, he?/she? would have found lots of info on DEMORS on our blogs.

Seller writes:



A great side view profile of a gentleman with a cravet and a woman with a white painted collar.
Great detail to the paintings with ADDED GOLD HIGHLIGHTS. The Condition is EXTREMELY NICE. Wonderful original molded wooden frames that still retain its original lemon gold painted surfaces. The back papers are replaced and there is some foxing from an older oval border mat. The painting are in Near perfect condition. We did not research "Demors".


Lucky For Bidders Reserve Was Not Met

This silhouette was bidded up to $108 but did not meet its reserve. Lucky you!
We have plenty of this 20th century faker's work illustrated throughout our blogs.

Seller writes:

Dated 1822 American Hand Painted Silhouette ! Period Silhouetee in period Case

Wonderful Period miniature Hand Painted Silhouettes !!  Both initialed H.W. (Artist or Setter ?) and dated 1822, presuming they are Man & Wife.  Very well done by a Talented Artist of the Period !!  The Case is original and Gold filled.  Made to wear as a Neclace and measures 2 1/8" X 1 3/4".  No damage or repairs and 100% as described or a full refund.  There is a reserve, but affordable to most.  Good Luck !!


Flabbergasted! Todd's Patent Silhouette Brings $900

In a recent Hudson Valley Auctioneers' auction, a silhouette described as, "Todd patent silhouette, Mr. Elbridge Gerry (?) 1792. a medium sized silhouette minor water stain towards the top. Has the Todd patent imprint, dated 1792," brings $900 plus a buyer's fee of 20%.

They never claimed it to be an early 19th century silhouette. They simply described what they saw. In other words whoever bought it is stuck with it. There is no recourse. However,  if they had described it as being cut by ISAAC TODD, the buyer could possibly make a stink out of it. But then there are those "terms of sale" that make it impossible to renege out of the contract. I hope whoever bought this 20th century fake makes the best out of it and "hang" it proudly.


Rare Kentuckian Silhouette

Someone paid $205 for it. Why would anyone think this silhouette to be from the 19th century? This silhouette is quite modern and nothing about it turns me on. But I guess it was worth $205 to someone. Hope the buyer enjoys it! The following description is from the seller.

You are bidding on a beautiful rare antique silhouette of Sarah Mc Afee Curran, daughter of Robert B. Mc Afee, Kentucky Polititian and seventh Lieutenant Govenor of Kentucky, 1824-1828. You can find alot of great info on him at There is a small letter on the back and the last owner of this piece typed it out. I picked this up at a recent estate sale. The pictures say the rest.


None of these Silhouettes is 19th Century

I found these on the internet, all from the same auction house. The prices realized are before any buyer's commission is added. There are 40 of them here. None of them is 19th century. I am sure some of these fakes will end up on eBay as genuine antique silhouettes. We will keep our eyes on them.


Below are some of the descriptions for these silhouettes by the auction house.

Group of Five Silhouettes. L to R: By Master Hubard. By William Bache, stamped Baches Patent. By Thomas Edward, 1840. By William Bache, stamped Baches Patent. By Doyle. Max. 5" x 3 1/2".

Group of Eight Silhouettes. Bottom Row L to R: Sgn. Doyle, Boy w/cap; Stamped Peal, hollow cut bust of lady; Stamped Peal, hollow cut bust of man; sgn. JW Jarvis 1809, painted 1/2 length lady; Stamped Peale, hollow cut bust of a man; stamped King, hollow cut bust of a man; MA Honeywell, 1809, cut bust of Lady Sarah Temple; Max. 4 1/2" x 3 1/2".

Group of Eight Silhouettes. Bottom row L to R: Stamped King, hollow cut bust of boy; Stamped King, hollow cut bust of a girl; Stamped JW (Joseph Wood), hollow cut bust of a lady; Stamped FP Jones Fedit, hollow cut bust of a lady w/ink detail; Label on reverse "cut w/scissors by Master Hubbard w/o drawing or machine", cut bust of lady; Unsgn, hollow cut painted bust of lady w/white bonnet and collar, written on back "Sarah Crook Inskip aged 66 years, died April 1831 aged 72."; top row: Stamped JW (Joseph Wood), hollow cut girl w/braid & bow, inked detail; Stamped JW Jones Fecit, hollow cut bust of lady w/inked details. Max. 5 1/2" x 4".

Group of Eight Silhouettes. L to R: Sgn. Marion Beasley, Charleston, SC, Hollow cut bust of young boy; Sgn. Doyle, hollow cut bust of a girl w/ink detail; Sgn. Weston of NY 1857, Cut bust of a lady w/painted detail; Sgn. Weston NY 1842, Cust & pasted bust of a woman w/white detail; Sgn. Weston NY 1842, Cut & pasted bust of a man w/white detail; Stamped Williams, Hollow bust of a man; Sgn. Louise King, RL 1816, Hollow cut girl; Stamped King, (William King) hollow cut bust of a woman. Max. 7" x 6".