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

Sunday, May 22, 2016

John C. Fremont

This portrait of John C. Fremont by William Smith Jewett hangs in the National Portrait Gallery in Washington, DC.
"In 1846 the newspaperman John L. O'Sullivan coined the phrase 'manifest destiny' to describe America's mission to 'overspread the continent allotted [to us] by Providence.' A member of the U.S. Topographical Corps, the 'Great Pathfinder' John C. Fremont made that destiny a reality with his many explorations of western routes to the Pacific. In 1846-47, Fremont fought to capture California from Mexico, but his insubordination led to his dismissal from service, an act that only added to his appeal as spokesman for western Americans. Personally and politically well-connected (he was the son-in-law of powerful Missouri senator Thomas Hart Benton), Fremont was a senator from California and then ran for president in 1856 as the Republican Party's first candidate. He was an unsuccessful Civil War general, losing Abraham Lincoln's confidence when he issued a premature announcement emancipating Missouri's slaves." -- National Portrait Gallery

When Fremont ran for president in 1856 as the first Republican candidate, the slogan was “Free Soil, Free Labor, Free Speech, Free Men, and Fremont.”

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