Philip Rosenbach purchased a collection of 450 portrait miniatures from English painter Talbot Hughes in 1928. The largest collection of oil on copper miniatures in the United States, it includes portraits painted by English, Dutch, Spanish, Italian, and French artists. In addition to the Hughes collection, the Rosenbach maintains a ﬁne selection of American, English, and Continental miniatures in other media: watercolor on vellum, watercolor on ivory, enamel, and wax, as well as one miniaturist’s paintbox and another’s diary and account book. The portraits date from the 16th to the 19th century. Although many retain their original frames, a large number have been reframed, probably by an earlier collector, to standardize their appearance. Philip Rosenbach displayed the miniatures grouped in a series of tortoise-shell frames.
Anna Claypoole Peale, born in 1791, came from an accomplished family of artists. Her uncle was the famous Charles Willson Peale and her father, James Peale, had been trained by his older brother and was an accomplished painter of miniatures and, later on, of still lives. (Unlike her cousins, Anna avoided the pressure of being …