"A portrait is a picture in which there is just a tiny little something not quite right about the mouth." -- John Singer Sargent

Friday, April 29, 2016

Zachary Taylor

This 1848 portrait of Zachary Taylor attributed to James Reid Lambdin hangs in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC.
"Throughout his career as a professional soldier Zachary Taylor took no more than a passing, interest in politics. But his victories at the battles of Palo Alto, Monterrey, and Buena Vista during the Mexican War changed all of that. In their wake, this 'rough and ready' general became eminently ripe for elective office. Even if Taylor had wanted to, he perhaps could not have stopped the groundswell of determination within the Whig Party to elect him president in 1848.
Upon entering the White House, Taylor declared his intention to bring harmony to the Union. Yet his refusal to placate the South by allowing slavery in some of the new territories acquired during the Mexican war did quite the opposite. Within a year of Taylor's coming to office, the country seemed to be moving toward civil war. Only after his unexpected death in July 1850 did compromise on this divisive issue become possible."  --  National Portrait Gallery
This portrait of Taylor appeared in an 1848 campaign biography of Taylor and Fillmore.

This profile portrait is from the same document.

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