The National Portrait Gallery


The National Portrait Gallery

The National Portrait Gallery is in Washington, DC and has over 7,000 portraits of the heroes and villans of American history.

"Often I have found a Portrait superior in real instruction to half-a-dozen written "Biographies," as Biographies are written; or rather, let me say, I have found that the Portrait was as a small lighted candle by which the Biographies could for the first time be read, and some human interpretation be made of them."
Thomas Carlyle, 1854

A informative web gallery is George Washington: A National Treasure. This contains a wealth of information about George Washington as well as discussions about the artist and the artist's intent.

There are virtual tours of twent-four past exhibitions with images from the exhibit and notes about the artist and the ways that he or she worked.

You can also search the majority of portraits in the collection by artist or by the sitter (the person in the portrait). Who's your American hero? Look for their portrait here. Note: A person must be dead for twenty years before their portrait is added to the collection.


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