American Painter John Trumbull Born – Today in History: June 6
Sarah Trumbull with a Spaniel by John Trumbull

John Trumbull, Sarah Trumbull with a Spaniel, ca. 1802, oil on canvas
-Yale University Art Gallery

On June 6, 1756, John Trumbull, painter, architect, and author, was born in Lebanon. The son of Governor Jonathan Trumbull, Trumbull served in the Continental Army as an aide to Washington. He resigned his commission in 1777 and traveled to London in 1780 to study painting under Benjamin West. While there, he was imprisoned on suspicion of treason and deported. He later returned, becoming the ambassador to London from 1794 to 1804. Trumbull painted historical and Revolutionary War subjects and was commissioned by Congress to paint the four large paintings that decorate the Capitol Rotunda. In 1831 he founded the Trumbull Gallery at Yale, the first American college art museum, and upon his death he was buried under the gallery.

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“Yale University Art Gallery,” n.d. Link.


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