Pierre Toussaint (ca. 1781-1853)
Date: ca. 1825
Medium: Watercolor on ivory
Dimensions: Overall: 3 1/4 x 2 5/8 in. ( 8.3 x 6.7 cm )
Place made: North America, U.S.A., New York
Credit Line: Gift of Miss Georgina Schuyler
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Object Number: 1920.4
Marks: signature: at the right: "Meucci"
Born in slavery in Santo Domingo, Haiti, Pierre Toussaint was brought to New York about 1797 by Jean Bérard, a wealthy French landowner. When Bérard returned to Haiti and suddenly died, leaving his young widow in New York without means, Toussaint took care of her until her death. He supported her as well as his own family by becoming one of the most successful and fashionable hairdressers in New York City.
NATIONAL MUSEUM OF AMERICAN ART, Washington, D.C., 3/29/91-6/16/91; ART INSTITUTE OF CHICAGO, Illinois, 9/1/91-11/19/91, "Tokens of Affection: The Portrait Miniature in America".
"Slavery in New York," New-York Historical Society, October 17, 2005-March 5, 2006.