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Copy 1 

1^- OF THE 






cphoa ol (.a„uvu« MatiK- of Wa.sliington, presented to the North Carolina Historical 
Commission by the Italian Government, 1909, now in the State Capitol 
of North Carolina. From the original in the Canova 
Museum, Possagno, Italy. 





Secretary of the North Carohna Historical Commission 



^t^G 19 1910 


The North Carolina Historical Commission 

J. Bryan Grimes, Chairman 

W. J. Peele, Raleigh M. C. S. Noble, Chapel Hill 

D. H. Hill, Raleigh Thomas W. Blount, Roper 

R. D. W. Connor, Secretary 



Probably no work of art ever excited a more general 
interest in the United States than Canova's statue of Wash- 
ington. The time at which it was ordered, the scarcity of 
such works of art in the United States, the fame of the 
sculptor, the manner in which the statue was brought to this 
country, the eminent names associated with its history, and 
its tragic fate, all combined with the love and veneration felt 
for the memory of Washington to attract to it the attention 
of the jSTation and to make its erection a national event. 
The recent liberality of the Italian Government in present- 
ing a replica of the plaster cast to the State of ISTorth Caro- 
lina has added another interesting incident to its history. 

The statue was ordered just after the close of our second 
war with England, in which the young ISTation had asserted 
its dignity and vindicated its claim to the respect and con- 
sideration of the world. Men spoke of the contest as our 
"Second War for Independence," and its victories recalled 
the glories of the Kevolution. At the Fourth of July ban- 
quet in Ealeigh, in 1815, the following were among the 
toasts offered: 

"The Army of the United States: — The achievements of 
our soldiery against the veterans of Europe during the late 
contest, have confirm,ed that character for skill and bravery 
which we acquired in the Revolutionary War." 

"The Day We Celebrate: — May Americans ever cherish 
the political principles of '76." 

"The Warriors and Patriots of the Revolution: — Men 
whom their country delights to honor." 

As memories of the Revolution were revived, the central 
figure of that struggle loomed up with more than its usual 

6 North Carolina Historical Commission. 

greatness. Somehow or other it seemed that as the genius of 
Washing-ton had established independence, so his spirit had 
guided the Nation through its struggle to maintain it. 

"The Memory of Washington" (thus ran the toast at the 
Raleigh banquet) : — "Though every struggle we are called 
upon to make for the maintenance of our Independence will 
raise up distinguished Heroes and Statesmen, Washington 
will still remain first in the hearts of the American people." 

While this feeling was at its height, the General Assembly 
of North Carolina met in annual session. On the 16th of 
December, 1815, the House of Commons, and four days later 
the Senate, unanimously adopted a resolution instructing 
the Governor "to purchase on behalf of this State a full 
length statue of General Washington." As there was no 
limitation of price or action placed on him, the Governor 
determined to execute the commission in the most liberal 
spirit. At his request the State's senators in Congress, 
Messrs. Turner and Macon, undertook to ascertain whether 
a statue "worthy the character it is to represent, and the 
State which erects it," could be made in the United States ; 
and if not, what would be the cost of getting one from Italy, 

Some of the most eminent men in the country became 
interested in the work. William Thornton and Benjamin 
H. Latrobe, architects of the National Capitol, declared that 
the statue could be executed in the United States as well as 
anywhere, and recommended a French sculptor named Vala- 
perti ; but Joseph Hopkinson and Thomas Jefferson were of 
opinion that no sculptor in the United States would offer 
himself as competent to do the work. Both urged that Canova 
be employed. 

Accordingly to Canova Governor Miller decided to apply. 
In determining what style should be adopted and what model 
should be followed, the opinion of Jefferson, in favor of the 
Roman, prevailed. Acting again on Jefferson's advice, Gov- 
ernor Miller sought the services of Thomas Appleton, Ameri- 
can Consul at Leghorn, in the negotiations with Canova. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 7 

His instructions were that the style should be Roman, the 
size somewhat larger than life, the price to Canova $10,000. 
the attitude to be left to the artist. Delighted at receiving 
the commission, Appleton hastened to approach the sculptor, 
from whom he received a favorable reply. 

As it was intended that the statue should be placed in the 
hall of the State Senate, which was only sixteen feet in 
height, Appleton was of opinion that the statue should be in 
a sitting attitude. This was also Canova's opinion, and he 
was permitted to have his way. Cerrachi's bust was sent to 
him as the model for the head, but for the figure the sculptor 
was left to follow his own imagination. He pushed the work 
as rapidly as possible and completed it in the spring of 1821. 
Upon being advised that it was ready for shipment the 
Governor of JS^orth Carolina applied to the Secretary of the 
Navy for permission to have it brought to the United States 
in a war vessel. This request was readily granted and the 
necessary orders promptly issued. Accordingly, Commo- 
dore William Bainbridge, commanding the United States 
Ship Columbus, in a letter written May 19, 1821, from 
Gibraltar Bay, informed the Governor of North Carolina that 
he had the statue on board and would sail within ten days 
with it for the United States. The Columbus with her cargo 
arrived at Boston July 22, and thence the statue was shipped 
by a coasting vessel to Wilmington, N. C. From Wilmington 
a river boat conveyed it up the Cape Uear River to Fayette- 
ville, whence it was brought overland to Raleigh. It reached 
Raleigh December 24, 1821, and with elaborate ceremonies 
was set up in the rotunda of the State House. 

Perhaps the most interesting event in its brief history was 
the visit which La Fayette paid to it in March, 1825. "This 
was indeed an interesting scene," wrote an eye witness, "and 
we were fortunately so situated that we heard the inquiries 
and remarks, and witnessed the feelings which it [the statue] 
elicited. We were gratified to hear the General observe that 
the likeness was much better than he expected to see. He 

8 North Carolina Historical Commission. 

seemed deeply interested in examining the historical designs 
on the pedestal, and expressed his approbation of the ex- 
quisite workmanship of the whole. "^ 

The statue had but a brief existence. In the early morn- 
ing of June 21, 1831, the citizens of Raleigh were alarmed 
by the cry of fire and in a few minutes every person in the 
village knew that the State House was in flames. The struc- 
ture was soon a heap of ashes. With it was destroyed the 
statue of Washington, ''that proud monument of national 
gratitude, which," declared the Ealeigh Begister, '"was our 
pride and glory." 

The destruction of the statue was bemoaned throughout 
ISTorth Carolina, and was the cause of much disgust in other 

1 In the life of William Winston Seaton, Mrs. Seaton, writing from 
Washington City, to her mother, Mrs. Gales, at Raleigh, says : 

"We had a most kind note from LaFayette, proposing to spend half 
an hour with us, during the last day of his stay here. The half-hour 
passed qviickly in the most interesting conversation, and he protracted 
the visit until the hour had also fled. He spoke to me much of North 
Carolina, of your kind hospitality to him, of Washington's Statue b.y 
Canova, which he saj's is a splendid monument of the Sculptor's genius, 
but is the most inexcusable action of his life, as he sinned both against 
light and knowledge in making it as much like me as the great Wash- 
ington. But mum to the Raleighites." Pp. 121-122. 

George Bancroft, who visited LaFayette in 1821, made the follow^ing 
entry in his Diary: 

"May 30 [1821]. General la Fayette had encouraged me to come to 
see him. I went to his house today, and was sliown into his parlour. 
Four engravings hang on its walls. The Rights of man and of the citi- 
zen, as decreed by the 'Assembl6e Constituante,' and accepted by King 
Louis XVI, surrounded by appropriate devices are hung on one side of 
the door. A similar copy of the constitution of the United States is 
on the other side; at the top of it is the likeness of Washington. The 
third Engraving is that of the French frigate, which when beaten by 
the English chose rather to go down, than surrender; the moment 
chosen is that, when the French are about to be swallowed up by the 
waves, and in the enthusiasm of liberty exclaim, vive la liberte, vive la 
R6publique. The last Engraving is one taken from the statue lately 
made of Washington by Canova. This hangs in the most conspicuous 
part of the room, and attracts the eye at once on entering. These are 
worthy ornaments for the chamber of a distinguished partisan of lib- 
erty. It has seldom had in Europe so pure and upright a champion as 
General la Fayette." — Howe: "Life and Letters of George Bancroft," 
I., 10.5-106. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 9 

parts of the Union. Chancellor Kent, of New York, in a 
conversation with William A. Graham, of North Carolina, 
"spoke of the loss of Washington's statue and expressed much 
disgust at the negligence which had caused it." At Leghorn, 
Appleton read the news "with a very sincere sensibility." 
The State employed Ball Hughes, an English sculptor who 
had recently arrived in the United States, to restore the 
statue, appropriating $5,000 for the purpose; but Hughes 
proved faithless to his engagement and nothing came of it. 

For many years the ruins of the statue on exhibition in 
the State Hall of History were a melancholy reminder of 
the precious treasure which had brought to the people of 
North Carolina so much self-gratification. Nobody dreamed 
that the statue could ever be replaced, and the State con- 
soled herself for her loss by the purchase of a bronze replica 
of Houdon's statue at Richmond. But in 1908 the Secre- 
tary of the North Carolina Historical Commission learned 
through the Hon, Bellamy Storer, former Ambassador to 
Austria, that the original model made by Canova himself 
still existed in the Canova Museum, at Possagiio, Italy. A 
request for further information directed to Hon. Lloyd C. 
Griscom, American Ambassador at Rome, brought a reply 
from Mr. Winthrop, Second Secretary of Embassy, in which 
it was intimated that the Italian Government would present 
the State of North Carolina with a plaster replica. The 
generosity of the Italian Government was promptly accepted, 
and in January of the present year, the replica was received 
and set up in the State Capitol at Raleigh.^ 

1 Mr. F. W. Ruckstuhl. sculptor, of New Yoi'k, who was in Europe 
during the summer of 1909 directing the carving of his statue of John 
C. Calhoun for Statuary Hall, Washington, and of his bust of William 
A. Graham, for the North Carolina Historical Commission, was largely 
instrumental in getting the replica completed and shipped to America. 
At the request of the Italian Minister of Fine Arts, Mr. Ruckstuhl 
examined the replica, and upon his approval of the work, it was offi- 
cially accepted. Mr. Ruckstuhl was acting for the North Carolina His- 
torical Commission without compensation for his trouble and expense. 
It is a pleasure, therefore, to make this acknowledgment of his disin- 
terested services. 

10 North Carolina Historical Commission. 

Perhaps the best description of the statue is that of the 
Coiiritess Albrizzi in ''The Works of Antonio Canova," illus- 
trated by the great English engraver, Henry Moses : 

"In this fine composition Canova has not only maintained 
the dignity of his subject, but (warmed by admiration of 
the amiable qualities of this illustrious man) has also infused 
into the statue an expression of the gentleness and benevo- 
lence which attempered his severer virtues. 

"The hero is sitting with an air of noble simplicity on an 
elegant seat, raised on a double square base. ISTothing can 
surpass the digTiity of the attitude or the living air of medi- 
tation which it breathes ; and the grandeur of the style, the 
force and freedom of the execution, the close and animated 
resemblance to the original, all conspire to place this statue 
in the highest rank of art. The fine tunic which he wears is 
seen only at the knee, being covered by an ample ornamented 
cuirass, above which is a magnificent mantle fastened by a 
clasp on the right shoulder, and flowing down behind in 
majestic folds. Beneath his right foot, which is extended 
forward, is a parazonium sheathed, and a scepter, signify- 
ing that the successful termination of the war, and the estab- 
lishment of the laws, had rendered them now useless. 

"The hero is in the act of Avi'iting on a tablet held in his 
left hand, and resting on the thigh, which is slightly raised 
for its support. From the following words already inscribed 
on it, we learn the subject which occupies his mind — 
'Oeorge Washington to the people of the United States — 
Friends and Fellow-Citizens.'^ In his right hand he holds 
the pen with a suspended air, as if anxiously meditating on 
the laws fitted to promote the happiness of his countrymen ; 
a border of the mantle, raised to the tablet by the hand which 
supports it, gives a fine effect to this graceful and decorous 
action. In his noble countenance the sculptor has finely por- 
trayed all his great and amiable qualities, inspiring the be- 

1 Giorgio Washington al popolo degli Stati Uniti ; Amici e Concitta- 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 11 

holder with mingled sensations of affection and veneration. 
This statue is only in a slight degree larger than life ; his 
robust form corresponding with his active and vigorous mind. 

"If to this great man a worthy cause was not wanting, or 
the means of acquiring the truest and most lasting glory, 
neither has he been less fortunate after death, when, by the 
genius of so sublime an artist, he appears again among his 
admiring countrymen in this dear and venerated form ; not 
as a soldier, though not inferior to the greatest generals, but 
in his loftier and more benevolent character of the virtuous 
citizen and enlightened lawgiver." 

Though somewhat overdrawn in the author's enthusiastic 
admiration of the genius of the sculptor, this description is 
in the main accurate. There were not wanting those, when 
the statue was first brought to America, who sharply criti- 
cized the sculptor for Romanizing the American general, 
declaring it to be a better statue of Julius Csesar than of 
George Washington ; nor have such critics yet been silenced. 
ISTevertheless these criticisms rather add to than detract from 
the general interest which the statue excites ; nor do they 
lessen one whit the liberality of the Italian Government in 
putting it into the power of the State of ISTorth Carolina to 
restore to the American people what is in many respects the 
most interesting, if not the most perfect tribute that art has 
ever paid to the memory of Washington. 


The following letters form only a small part of the cor- 
respondence relative to the statue now in the Collections of 
the !N^orth Carolina Historical Commission, but they contain 
all the data essential to an understanding of its history. 

Resolution of the General Assembly 

Resolved unanimously, that the Governor of this state be, 
and he is hereby authorized and requested to purchase on 
behalf of this state, a full length statue of General Wash- 
ington; and that he cause the same to be fixed at the inter- 
section of the entries of the lower story of the state house, 
and have the same surrounded by an iron railing ; and that 
the governor be authorized to draw his warrant or warrants 

upon the public treasury for a sum not exceeding 

dollars to pay therefor ; and that the treasurer be allowed the 
same in the settlement of his public accounts/ 

Gov. William Miller to James Turner ^ 

Executive Office Xo. Ca.^ 
Raleigh 30th Decem. 1815. 

By a resolution of the last Assembly I am authorized and 
requested to jDurchase for the State a full length statue of 
General Washington. If a marble one can be obtained in 
the United States I should wish to get one. Xot knowing 

1 Introduced into the House of Commons, December 16, 1815, by 
Thomas Spencer, of Hyde County. Passed its third reading in the 
House of Commons December 19. Passed its third reading in the Sen- 
ate December 20. 

2 Governor's Letter Book. William Miller, Governor of North Caro- 
lina 1814-1817. James Turner, United States Senator 180.5-1816. 

3 A letter of the same tenor was written to Senator Nathaniel Macon. 

14 ISToKTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

where work of this description is executed and thinking it 
probable you may be able through some of your friends in 
Congress to aid me I have taken the liberty of troubling you. 
I am not limited in price and should therefore wish it exe- 
cuted in the best manner. 

With great respect 
I am Sir 
Your obt Servant 

Will Miller. 
To James Turner Esquire. 

Nathaniel Macon to Governor Miller ' 

Washington 6 Jany 1816. 

The letter you wrote on the 30 ult. has been received. I 
will cheerfully give every aid in my power to procure the 
statue of General Washington, ordered by the General Assem- 
bly; to ascertain whether one can be made in the United 
States, to answer the expectation of the Legislature, I have 
written to Baltimore, Philadelphia and New York; a copy 
of my letters is herewith transmitted, that you may decide 
how far the enquiries are calculated to carry into execution 
the resolution under which you act. Whatever information 
may be obtained, will be immediately sent to you. 

I am very respectfully 
Yr Obt servt 
Kathl Macon 

]^. B. I am almost certain that there is not a statuary in 
the U. S. 

1 A. L. S. 

Cai^^ova's Statue of Washington. 15 


From Nathaniel Macon' 

Washington 5 Jaiiy 1816. 

The Legislature of jSTortli Carolina has ordered a full size 
statue of General Washington of the hest marble and work- 
manship to be procured and put up in the Capitol of the 
State. The Governor who is authorized to carry the order 
into execution has requested me, to ascertain whether one 
worthy the character it is to represent, and the State which 
erects it can be made in the United States, and the sum that 
it will jjrobably cost, if it can not be got in this country ; the 
best means of getting one from Italy and the probable cost 

I flatter myself, you will pardon the liberty I take in ask- 
ing you to give the desired information ; it is done under the 
belief that you approve the measure, and are always willing 
to give aid to carry into execution that which you approve. 

I am, etc 

ISTathl Macon 

Nathaniel Macon to Governor Miller " 

Washington 3d February 1816. 

The enclosed letters contain the information respecting 
the Statue of General Washington ordered by the Assembly, 
which has been collected in consequence of your request. 

I am very respectfully Sir 
Your obt Servant 

IS^ATH Macon 

'N, B. You will I hope attend to the P. S. of Mr. Jeffer- 
son's letter. 

1 Copy in Macon's; handwriting. 

2 Governor's Letter Book. 

16 iN'oRTH Cakolina Historical Commission. 


William Thornton to Nathaniel Macon ' 

City of Washington 8th Jaiiy: 1816. 

I had yesterday the honor of your letter, respecting the 
very praiseworthy determination of the Legislature of your 
State to erect a Statue to the great Washington, and it would 
give me very great satisfaction to he in any manner instru- 
mental in forwarding a work so highly honorable to the State 
you represent. 

I went this morning to see an Italian Artist of great merit, 
SigTior Valaperta, who has had some expectation of being 
employed in the public works here ; but nothing has yet been 
decided relative to him. I enquired what price would be 
demanded for a full size Statue of the General executed here 
in his best manner. He said ab[ou]t five thousand doll[ar]s. 
I enquired how much would be demanded by the great Stat- 
uary Cannova, an Artist in Rome, whose works equal the best 
Antiques? He answered ab[ou]t the same Sum. We have 
found Marble in this Country equal to the fine Marble of 
Carrara. It is to be had in large Blocks near Baltimore as 
fine and correct likeness. The celebrated Ceracchi executed 
Waterford in Loudoun County, Virg[ini]a, of equal quality, 
and may be obtained in large blocks. The bust of Washing- 
ton was taken by Houdoai of Paris, and the Casts in this 
Country are all from that Bust. Houdon took an impression 
from the Face of the General, and finished his work by a 
good impression from the Mask ; whereby he obtained a very 
fine and correct likeness. The celebrated Ceracchi executed 
a grand bust of the General, which was purchased for, and is 
still in possession of the King of Spain. This marble Bust 
had great dignity of Character, and was considered as a mas- 
terpiece. I doubt, however, whether the likeness exceeded 

1 A. L. S. William Thornton, one of the architects of the Capitol at 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 17 

or even equalled the one by Houdon. These Busts being done 
by the first Artists, and Casts being within the command of 
the European Sculptors a fine Statue could no doubt be 
executed there. The Statue of Pitt, in jSTew York, cost one 
thousand Guineas many y[ea]rs ago, and I have heard that 
it is a capital performance. Flaxman engaged to execute a 
fine full length Statue of the General for seven hundred and 
fifty Guineas, and he is the first Artist in England, or in 
the world, except Cannova. Whoever should be employed to 
execute the Statue should be particularly cautioned against 
using the full length Painting of the Genl. by our Country- 
man Stuart; for though he is unequalled in a Head he can- 
not draw a Figure. The one in possession of the Marquis of 
Lansdowne is entirely out of proportion : but the propor- 
tions by our Countrvman Trumbull are correct ; jet the head 
is not to be compared to the Stuart's. Any Statue executed 
in marble may easily be packed up so safely as to be imported 
without danger. Any further Information in my power will 
be given at any time with pleasure. 

I am, 

with the highest respect and esteem yrs. etc 

William Thornton. 
Honble. ISTathl. Macon 

Beprese. in Congress 

Benjamin H. Latrobe to Nathaniel Macon ' 

Washington, January (9th, 1816 
The Honble N. Macon 

Senate U. S. 
Dear Sir, 

I received your letter yesterday afternoon, and give you 
with pleasure all the information I possess on the subject of 

1 A. L. S. Benjamin H. Latrobe, architect. He perfected Thornton's 
designs for the Capitol. After the burning of the Capitol in 1814, by the 
British, Latrobe was called upon to rebuild it. 


18 N'oRTii Carolii^a Historical Commission. 

the Statue of General Washington proposed to be erected in 
the State-House of X. Carolina. 

The Statue may be very admirably made in this country 
by Mr. Villaperta. He is an Italian artist who after being- 
long employed in Spain, yvas engaged before the fall of Napo- 
leon in the decoration of his palace at Malmaison. The dis- 
tracted state of France induced him to seek his fortune in 
this country, and he has brought with him the most portable 
of his works, — a few most admirable sculptures in Ivory. 
He also brought With him letters of recommendation to the 
President and to other prominent characters in this country. 
I have likewise received by him letters from France bearing 
high testimony to his character as an artist and as a Man. 
But his works bear him the best testimony, and in a few 
days, I will call upon you with him, and you shall see them. 
I may therefore answer that the Statue may be as well exe- 
cuted in this country, as in Italy, unless an enormous price 
is given to Canova, or Thorkeld, men who for many Cen- 
turies have had no equal, and whose abilities it is almost 
impossible to purchase. 

I give it now as my opinion, that the Statue would be 
made by Mr. Villaperta for $1,500. I wished to have had 
a bust of General Jackson made for the Corporation of this 
city, but the project ended in an address. On this occasion 
I made an estimate with Mr. Villaperta, and rating the time 
necessary to be employed very moderately, we found that it 
would cost $800 in workmanship. The Marble and putting 
up would probably have made it $1,000. Xow the bust 
being the most important part of the work, I presume $1,500 
would be a just price for a whole length figure. The block, 
transportation, and putting up, upon a plain and solid 
pedestal, would cost, I think, $1,000 more; at the outside, 
say in all $2,500. 

We have in America marble very superior in texture to 
that of Carrara in Italy which is the kind always used for 
statues, and I believe, is the best that country affords. The 
Parian and Penthelic Marbles of antiquity, are not inferior 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 19 

to ours, but they are very superior to that of Italy. They 
are hoAvever inaccessible, being in the hands of the Turks. 
The difficulty here is that our quarries are scarcely opened. 
An admirable Mass of Statuary Marble has lately been found 
very near to Baltimore, and I have found as good as any in 
the world in Loudon county, Virg[ini]a. From what I hear 
of the Baltimore Marble, as to its size it would probably be 
the source from whence to obtain a proper block. The strata 
of that of Loudon County are too thin. Vermont is inex- 
haustible in good statuary marble, but the transportation of 
so large a block as is necessary would render it inadvisable 
to procure it from thence. The only doubt therefore which 
remains is as to procuring a proper block of Marble. En- 
quiry will either remove it, or oblige you to resort to Europe. 
This enquiry I will most cheerfully make, if you wish me 
to do so. 

It is next to be considered in how far a resort to Europe 
might be adviseable. 

Of the two sculptors for whom I sent in the year 1804, 
Frangoni, the sculptor of Statues, is dead. But Andrei is 
now in Italy directing the Sculpture of the Capitals of the 
Columns of the House of Representatives,' experience hav- 
ing taught us, that they may be procured for about half the 
price there of Marble, for which they could be made here of 
Freestone. If therefore the Statue were made in Italy, 
there would be a certainty that it would be well executed, 
Mr. Andrei being not only an excellent Sculptor, in his line, 
himself, but a Man of rare personal virtue, united to first 
rate talents, and firmness of character. He has also a per- 
fect knowledge of the temper of our country, and would see 
that no Italian frippery should degrade the dignity of a 
figure of Washington. He would employ a good artist. But 
I feel an objection to the Carrara Marble which is subject 
to black specks in the body of the stone, which sometimes 
hit upon the nose or under the eye and disfigure the finest 
Statues. iN'or may they be discovered untill the work is too 

20 I«]roRTii Carolina Historical Commission. 

far advanced to be throAvn awaj. Mrs. Barlow has a bust 
of Carrara Marble by Houdon, of her husband. The like- 
ness is strong, but the face has many black spots about it. 
Our Marble is free from this defect, and is also of much 
finer grain. 

As to the price of the work in Italy, it would be less there, 
than here. The transportation, freight, duties and charges, 
would however lessen the difference of price. Mrs. Barlow's 
bust cost in Paris 600 dollars, including the Material, Mr. 
Bacon in London 20 years ago, executed, the Marble Statue 
of Lord Rodney, for the Island of Jamaica, with its Marble 
Pedestal, also decorated with Sculpture, for 1000 Guineas, 
about $5000 besides the price of the Marble which Wias 3 
Guineas per foot ($15). In Italy it would have been done 
cheaper, but not so well. 

Upon the whole, whether executed in Italy or in America, 
less than $2,500 to $3000 should not be calculated upon. 
If, by any endeavors of mine, the price can be diminished, 
or in any way the object of the Legislature of your State 
promoted, my anxiety for the advancement of the fine arts, 
would impell me to exert myself on the occasion, without the 
inducement which I sincerely and warmly feel, to contribute 
as much as possible to honor the memory of Washington, as 
well as to show my personal respect for yourself. 

Yours very truly, Bn. Latrobe. 

William Jones to Nathaniel Macon ^ 

Philada. 20 Jan 1816 
Dear Sir 

My respect for the State you represent and for the memory 
of the venerated chief whose fame will survive the marble 
which gratitude maj^ erect to his virtues, could not fail to 
command the cheerful attempt to execute the task assigned 
to me in your letter of the 5th current ; and I have only to 
regret that the result is not more definite and satisfactory. 

1 A. L. S. William Jones, Secretary of the Navy 1813-1814. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 21 

I have sought information from those gentlemen of science 
and taste in this city who are supposed to be conversant with 
the fine arts, and I enclose a letter from Mr. Patterson the 
President of the mint who kindly undertook to aid my 
research. I also applied to Mr. Corea a foreign gentleman 
now resident in this city whose attainment in philosophical 
science, and knowledge of the fine arts it is believed are not 
surpassed by those of any individual who has visited our 
country. Indeed I should rely upon his information and 
judgment in this case with more confidence than upon that 
of any other ; and not less upon his candour, for he is a real 
philosopher, entirely divested of prejudice. He is decidedly 
of opinion that there is not a sculptor in the United States 
competent to execute the work in the style contemplated by 
the legislature of l!^. C, even if the foreign material could be 
procured in this country which he very much doubts. 

You no doubt recollect the statue of Doctor Franklin 
which adorns the front of the Library in this city. It is of 
Italian workmanship and is said to be tolerably well exe- 
cuted. It was presented by the late Mr. Bingham who em- 
ployed one of the most celebrated artists in Italy to execute 
it, for which he was paid $6000 ; but unfaithful to his 
engagement he employed one of his pupils for that purpose 
and paid him but $1000 for the work. This information 
I derive from Mr. Corea who says, the best method to have 
the work well executed will be to employ an agent whose 
taste and judginent in the arts may be relied upon ; to have 
the work done in Italy from the best model of Gen Washing- 
ton that can be procured ; but that everything depends upon 
the taste of the agent who may be employed. 

I should suppose that Stewart's full length portrait in 
addition to the bust would greatly aid the artist ; and that 
our minister at Paris (when one shall proceed there) would 
have the best opportunity of selecting a suitable agent to 
contract for and superintend the execution of the work. 

I have no doubt that under this arrangement the statue 

22 ISToBTH Cakolina Historical Commission. 

would not only be more worthy of the sentiments of your 
constituents, and of the sage w!hom it is to represent, but 
would be completed in less time and for less money than if 
indifferently and tardily executed in this country. 

There is a Mr. Miller in this city whose profession is that 
of a modeller, in which art he is said to possess considerable 
talent, having executed some very good casts. He would 
undertake to make the statue, and at a rough estimate sup- 
poses the cost would be from 3000, to 4000, dollars, exclu- 
sively of a suitable block of Italian marble to be furnished 
by the State. It is questionable however whether the con- 
templated style and execution of the work may be within the 
compass of his art ; and I strongly incline to the opinion 
of Mr. Corea. 

There is now at Washington City a Mr. Hassler one of 
the professors at West Point who has lately returned from 
Europe with the collection of astronomical and mathematical 
instruments procured by him for the government of the 
United States. He is said to be a gentleman of profound 
science and extensive knowledge particularly in the arts. 
It is highly probable that useful information might be de- 
rived from him on the subject of the statue. 

Mr. Hopkinson one of the representatives of this district 
is a gentleman of taste and information in respect to the 
fine arts, with the progress of which in our own country he 
is perfectly acquainted, having by his zealous exertions 
greatly contributed to their advancement. 

With great regard 
I am Dr Sir your friend 

W. Jones 

The Hon jSTathaniel Macon 
Senator from the State of ]^. C. 
In Congress. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 23 

Thomas Jefferson to Nathaniel Macon ' 

MoNTicELLO Jan. 22 [18] 16. 
Dear Sir 

Your favor of the 7tli after being a fortnight on the road, 
reached this last night. On the subject of the statue of 
Genl Washington which the legislature of ]!^. Carolina has 
ordered to be procured, and set up in their capitol, I shall 
willingly give you my best information and opinions. 

1. Your first enquiry is whether one worthy the character 
it is to represent, and the state which erects it, can be made 
in the U. S. ? Certainly it cannot. I do not know that 
there is a single marble statuary in the U. S. but I am sure 
there cannot be one who would offer himself as qualified to' 
undertake this monument of gTatitude and taste, — besides no 
quarry of statuary marble has yet, I believe, been opened in 
the U S., that is to say of a marble pure white, and in blocks 
of sufficient size, without vein or flaw. The quarry of 
Carara in Italy is the only one in the accessible parts of 
Europe which furnishes such blocks. It was from thence 
we brought to Paris that for the statue of G-enl. Washington 
made there on account of this state ; and it is from thence 
alone that all the Southern and maritime parts of Europe are 
supplied with that character of marble. 

2. Who should make it ? There can be but one answer 
to this. Old Canove of Rome. JSTo artist in Europe would 
place himself in a line with him ; and for 30 years, within 
my own knowledge, he has been considered by all Europe as 
without a rival. He draws his blocks from Carara, and 
delivers the statue compleat and packed for transportation 
at Rome. From thence it descends the Tyber ; but whether 
it must go on to Leghorn or some other shipping port, I do 
not know. 

3. Price, time, size and style ? It will probably take a 
couple of years to be ready. I am not able to be exact as 

1 A. L. S. 

24 North Carolina Historical Commission. 

to the price. We gave Iloiulon at Paris 1000 guineas for 
the one he made for this state ; but he solemnly and feelingly 
protested against the inadequacy of the price, and evidently 
undertook it on motives of reputation alone. He was the 
first artist in France, and being willing to come over to take 
the model of the General, which we could not have got 
Canove to have done, that circumstance decided on his 
employment. We paid him additionally for coming over 
about 500 guineas, and when the statue was done we paid 
the expenses of one of his under workmen to conie over and 
set it up, which might perhaps be 100 guineas more. I sup- 
pose therefore it cost us in the whole 8000 D. but this was 
only of the size of the life. Yours should be something lar- 
ger. The difference it makes in the impression can scarcely 
be conceived. As to the style or costume, I am sure the 
artist, and every person of taste in Europe would be for the 
Roman, the effect of which is undoubtedly of a different 
order. Our boots and regimentals have a very puny effect. 
Works of this kind are about one third cheaper at Rome than 
Paris ; but Canove's eminence will be a sensible ingredient 
in price. I think that for such a statue, with a plain ped- 
estal, you would have a good bargain from Canove at 7 [000] 
or 8000 D. and should not be surprised were he to require 
10,000 D. to which you would have to add the charges of 
bringing over, and setting up. The one half of the price 
would probably be to be advanced, and the other half paid 
on delivery. 

4. From what model ? Ciracchi made the bust of Genl 
Washington in plaister. It was the finest which came from 
his hand, and my opinion of Ciracchi was that he was second 
to no sculptor living, except Canove, and if he had lived, 
would have rivalled him. His style had been formed on the 
fine models of antiquity in Italy, and he had caught their 
ineffable majesty of expression. On his return to Rome, he 
made the bust of the General in marble, from that in plaister, 
it was sent over here, \\^s universally considered the best 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 25 

effigy of him ever executed, was bought by the Spanish min- 
ister for the King of Spain, and sent to Madrid. After the 
death of Ciracchi, Mr. Appleton, our Consul at Leghorn, a 
man of worth and taste, purchased of his widow the original 
plaister, with a view to profit by copies of marble and plais- 
ter from it. He still has it at Leghorn, and it is the only 
original from which the statue can be formed. But the ex- 
terior of the figure will also be wanting, that is to say the 
outward lineaments of the body and members to enable the 
artist to give to them also their true forms and proportions. 
There are, I believe, in Philadelphia, whole length paintings 
of Genl. Washington, from which, I presume, old Mr. Peale 
or his son wtould sketch on canvas the mere outlines at no 
great charge. This sketch, with Ciracchi's bust, would 

5. Through whose agency ? None so ready, or so compe- 
tent as Mr. Appleton himself. He has had relations with 
Canove, is a judge of price, convenient to engage the work, 
to attend to its progress, to receive and forward it to IST. 
Carolina. Besides the accommodation of the original bust 
to be asked from him, he will probably have to go to Rome 
himself to make the contract, and will incur a great deal of 
trouble besides from that time to the delivery in IST. Carolina ; 
and it should therefore be made a matter of interest with him, 
to act in it, as his time and trouble is his support. I imag- 
ine his agency from beginning to end would not be wiorth less 
than from 1[00] to 200 guineas. I particularize all these 
things, that you may not be surprised with after-claps of 
expense, not counted on beforehand. Mr. Appleton has two 
nephews at Baltimore in the mercantile line, and in corre- 
spondence with him. Should the Governor adopt this chan- 
nel of execution, he will have no other trouble than that of 
sending to them his communications for Mr. Ajppleton, and 
making the remittances agreed on as shall be convenient to 
himself. A letter from the Secretary of State to Mr. Apple- 
ton informing him that any service he can render the State 

26 North Carolina Historical Commission. 

of iSF. Carolina in this business, would be gratifying to his 
government, would not be without effect. 

Accept the assurance of my great esteem and respect. 

Th : Jefferson 

P. S.^ You mention that you shall communicate my let- 
ter to the Governor. To this I have no objection, provided 
it be kept out of newspapers. But as I do not know, to how 
many he may have to communicate it, I add this P. S. for 
your and his consideration only. Appleton has a friend and 
great favorite in a sculptor of the name of Bartholini, whom 
he thinks equal to Canove, and his friendship may lead him 
to find difficulties with Canove and draw the job to Bartolini, 
of whose name I never heard but from Mr. Appleton. But 
I could not yield to his opinion alone against that of all 
Europe. He should understand (without mentioning Bar- 
tolini) that it is particularly to the hand of Canove, and no 
other that they chuse to confide this work. Another private 
circumstance. I know nothing of Mr. Appleton's nephews 
in Baltimore, not even their names. That of course must be 
looked into. Ever, constantly and affectionately yours 

Th: J. 

Joseph Hopkinson to Nathaniel Macon ^ 

Feby 2, 1816 
Dear Sir 

My information from Philadelphia fully confirms the 
opinions I had the honour to offer you on the subject of a 
Statue of General Washing-ton. There is certainly no 
artist in this Country to whom the work ought to be entrusted 
if, as I presume, it is intended to have a work worthy of 
the subject, and of the dignity of the State under whose 
direction it is to be performed. Of the European artists, 

1 Written on separate sheet. 

2 A. L. S. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 27 

Canova, residing at Rome, should have the preference, not 
only on account of his superior excellence in the art ; but 
from a desire he is known to possess to send some specimen 
of his power to this Country. He would be particularly 
pleased with this subject. If however he should decline the 
undertaking, there are other very eminent Statuaries whose 
services may be obtained. If there is no suitable artist in 
the United States it may be unnecessary to say any thing on 
the subject of the marble. I repeat however that I have 
never seen or heard of any in this Country, equal to that 
which is found in Italy for this purpose. As to the probable 
cost of such a Statue as the State of North Carolina would 
choose to possess, I think it should not be estimated at less 
than Ten thousand Dollars. I beg you to understand, how- 
ever, that this is a part of the subject about which I am the 
least confident. 

With high respect 

I have the honor to be 
Your mo. obed. serv 


Honhle Me Macon 

Governor Miller to William R. King' 

Executive Office IST. C. 

Raleigh 4th May 1816 

The legislature of this State at its last Session having made 
it my duty to purchase a full length Statue of Gen. Wash- 
ington, and being advised that it cannot be executed in the 
United States in a manner worthy the State or the character 
which it is to represent, I must ask the favour of you during 
your stay in Italy to give me your aid in procuring one. 

The most celebrated artist in Europe, I have been in- 
formed, is old Canove of Rome. He draws his blocks of 

1 Governor's Letter Book. A letter of the same tenor was written to 
William Pinkney, United States Minister to Russia. 

28 JSToRTH Caeolina Historical Commission. 

marble from the quarry of Carara and delivers the Statue 
compleat and packed for transportation at Rome. Mr. Apple- 
ton, the American Consul at Leghorn, has Ciracchi's bust of 
the General in Plaister and as he has had relations with 
Canove, and is convenient to engage the work, I wish through 
you to procure his services. I will furnish him with a sketch 
of the outlines of a full length painting, from Philadelphia, 
which, with the bust in his possession will, I suppose, be 
sufficient for the artist. He shall be liberally compensated 
for his trouble in engaging the work, attending to its prog- 
ress, receiving and forwarding it to the State of I*^orth Caro- 
lina. Mr. Appleton has two nephews in Baltimore in the 
mercantile line, and in correspondence with him, whose 
address I should be glad you would obtain during your stay 
in Baltimore, and send me that mj communications and any 
remittances necessary, may be made through them. 

The style or costume to be Roman. The size somewhat 
larger than life. The attitude I leave to your taste and 
that of Mr. Appleton and the artist. The price not to exceed 
$10,000 to Canove. Should any advancement of money be 
necessary, and should Mr. Appleton's services be engaged he 
may draw upon me through his nephews in Baltimore and 
his drafts shall be honoured. 

With great respect 

I have the honor to be 
Your obt Servant 

Will : Miller. 

Honhle Will R. King 

Secretary of Legation to Russia. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 29 

Thomas Appleton to Governor Miller ^ 

Leghorn 20th Septr. 1816. 
His Excellency 

William Miller, Governor 

of the State of Xorth Carolina 

Towards the close of the last month, I received from 
ISTaples, throngh the medium of W. R. King esquire, Secre- 
tary of the American Legation to Russia, a letter from the 
Secretary of the U. S. in date of the 27th of May, relating 
to a Statne, which the government of l^orth Carolina is 
desirous to erect to the memory of the late illustrious General 
Washington. I avail myself, Sir, of the present occasion, to 
assure you, that no circumstance could be more grateful to 
me, than in being charged with procuring the Statue of the 
.father of our country ; and I beg your Excellency will be 
equally persuaded, that my utmost exertions shall not be 
wanting, to correspond in a suitable manner, to the confi- 
dence which is thus reposed in nie. x\t the same time, that 
I received the letter from the Secretary of State, I also re- 
ceived one from Mr. King in which he requests my superin- 
tendence of the Statue. On his reception of my reply, he 
has again written me from ISTajDles, on the 1st of the present 
month, inclosing me the drawing and inscription which are 
intended to be sculptured on the piedestal. I immediately 
wrote Mr. Canova at Rome, to be informed if he would 
undertake the business. Aware as I was, of his immense 
engagements, and that no consideration of a pecuniary kind, 
would induce him to accept a new work ; and nothing short 
of the precise object of my request, it was, therefore, that 
the terms of my letter were such, as has drawn from him the 
following passage, or rather, it is the translation of it. "In 
truth, the numerous labours to which I have obligated myself 
for many years to come, would seem to require, that I should 

1 A. L. S. Sent in triplicate. 

30 North Carolina Historical Com.mission. 

renounce to the honor proposed to me ; but my admiration 
for the genius who has performed such sublime deeds, for 
the safety and liberty of his country, compel me to make 
every effort to accomplish the Statue, you have proposed to 
me to execute ; I, therefore, accept the commission etc." I 
am the possessor of the original bust, in gesso or plaister of 
General Washington, and made by Cerrachi in the U. S. 
This will alone suffice for the likeness ; I shall, therefore, for- 
ward it by Sea to Rome. The lowness of your Senate-hall, 
which I am informed, is only sixteen feet, would seem to 
require, that the Statue should be sitting, this is the opinion 
of Mr. Canova; for a standing figure, and which, of course, 
must be larger than life, reposing on its proportionate base, 
would nearly touch the ceiling, and thus violate all estab- 
lished rules. Besides, a sitting figure seems more consistent 
with the place and purjDose, for which it is intended. On this 
subject, Sir, as well as in relation to the figures which are 
proposed to be Sculptured on the piedestal, I shall very f idly 
write you in my next respects, as the post departs in a few 
hours. With, regard to the expence, I am in hopes, to en- 
compass it in the 'Sum of Ten thousand dollars ; I should be 
enabled positively to say now, if I were now informed the 
cost of the piedestal, and some other indispensable charges ; 
but as I have already said, there is every probability, it will 
be within the before mentioned sum. The payments to be 
made, are as usual in all similar business, one third imme- 
diately, a second third, as soon as the work is commenced, 
and the last, when compleated. I have learnt from Mr. King, 
that it was your desire, I should draw on you for the amount ; 
but this mode. Sir, would be attended wiith great inconve- 
niences, and a very large discount would be required, if a 
purchaser could be found ; for the discredit which bills on the 
U. S. have since the peace fallen into, owing to certain depre- 
ciated bank-paper being a legal tender in many States ; that 
certainly, here, a buyer could not be found without a sacrifice, 
I presume, of nearly one quarter part; even though silver 

An Engraving in the Senate Chamber of Raleigh, representing LaFayette viewing Canova's Statue 

of Washington. From a picture painted in 1840 by J. Weisman and Emmanuel Lentze, 

and engraved by Albert Newsam. It bears the following inscription: 


As it appeared on the Pedestal, in the State House Rotunda, at 
Raleigh, Nortli Carolina. 

A beautiful liglit falling from the Dome Window, upon the slab of marble, ilhiniiiiates the 

whole statue. LaFayette is represented as viewing this masterly 

representation of his beloved General. 

Respectfully dedicated to the Legislature of North Carolina, 

Canova's Statue of Washingtojn'. 31 

dollars should be assured them. I, therefore propose, Sir, 
that this sum should be deposited by the State of North 
Carolina, in the hands of some banker of London, Paris, or 
Amsterdam, I should prefer one of the two latter places, and 
to be held by them payable to my drafts. In Paris, M. Hot- 
tinguer, is the banker of the American ministers. 

You will readily perceive. Sir, that I shall be immediately 
called on for this money, pardon me, therefore, if I urge the 
most speedy remittance, which may be in your power to make 
of the amount. Should you think proper to avail yourself 
of the services of my nephews in Baltimore, to negotiate the 
exchange their address is, IST. and C. Appleton of that city. 
Accept the expressions of respect, with which I have the 
honor to be. Your Excellency's most obedt. Servant. 

Th : Appleton 
Consul for U. S. A. 

His ExcELLEisrcY 
Governor Miller. 

Thomas Appleton to Governor Miller ^ 

LectHOrx 1st October 1816 

His Excellency William Miller 

Governor of the State of North Carolina 


The foregoing is a copy of my respects of the 20th of Sep- 
tember. On this day I have received a letter from Mr. 
Canova, of which the following is a translation. "Rome 28, 
September 1816. Sir, I now reply to your much esteemed 
favor of the 20th of September. I have then the honor to 
observe to you, that my desire of executing the Statue, Sit- 
ting, is occasioned, not wholly from the necessity of propor- 
tioning it to the height of the hall ; but likewise, because in 
this attitude, is infinite more digiiity ; and if I may be 

1 A. L. S. In duplicate. 

32 ]^ORTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

allowed the expression, I can give a greater force to my 
feeble genius. If I consulted only my own ease and interest, 
I should have adopted an erect figure, as requiring less 
labour ; but animlated with the ardent zeal, with which I am, 
to apply every effort of w,hich I am capable, to render me 
worthy of so great a Subject, I have much preferred the Sit- 
ting posture. I am etc. Canova." As no opinion of mine, 
Sir, could add the smallest weight, to the judgment of so 
great a man, it must be intirely left to your own decision ; 
and whether the result be for an erect, or sitting attitude it 
shall, on my part, be most scrupulously adhered to. I have, 
therefore, given the instructions, to make no further advance 
in the labour, than in procuring the marble, until I shall 
receive your reply ; and this is in compliance with the senti- 
ments of Mr. King, who left Florence on the 29 ultimo for 
St. Petersburg. As I was not previously informed of the 
precise time, he would arrive there, and only remaining a 
part of two days, it was impossible to meet him as I intended. 
He has written me from thence, recommending this delay, 
for he greatly approves the sitting posture. I have not, as 
yet, informed Mr. Canova, the precise figures proposed for 
the piedestal, for to my own very limited knowledge of the 
theory of the Art, there arose some objections to the figures, 
and which are the result of having very frequently seen, I 
believe, all the most Celebrated Statues of Antiquity, now 
extant in Italy. Will you then pardon me. Sir, if I offer 
some observations on the drawing, and which most assuredly 
I should not have taken this freedom, if they were correct 
with the figures which are delineated in our authors on my- 
thology. It is. Sir, an unalterable maxim in Sculpture, as 
it is in painting, that unity of Subject, should be strictly 
observed, throughout the piece. The drawing then contains 
two figures ; on the left, one representing the Goddess of 
Liberty, and the other, I presume, was intended for Ceres ; 
but the latter is by no means correct with mythology. It is 
delineated in a fashionable, modern deshabille dress, with a 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 33 

wreathe of flowers romid the head ; in the right hand, a cornu- 
copia of the same ; and in the left an ear of wheat. This 
figure then combines two Seasons & Subjects. 

The Goddess to be correctly expressed, the vestments 
should be heroic, with a wreathe of wheat round the head ; 
the right hand, is usually extended with poppies, a plant of 
extraordinary fecundity; and the left supporting an ample 
drapery. If it was intended for Flora, which it certainly 
more resembles, the cornucopia, should be in the left hand, 
while the right hand should support a consistent heroic dress, 
with a wreathe of flowers, but she should not have any of 
the attributes of Ceres. Were I consulted, I should most 
certainly recoimnend, instead of the Goddesses in question, 
to have sculptured on the piedestal, some expressive traits, 
in the life of the General, which would at once lead to the 
recollection of the numerous virtues, with which, he was so 
singTilarly adorned; and this, I believe, would not only be 
consistent with the usage of the most enlightened ages of 
antiquity, but comformable also, to the universal practice of 
modern times. Your Excellency will gTcatly oblige me, by 
foi'warding to me triplicate letters of your reply; and to 
divide them by Baltimore, N. York, and Boston, as offering 
the most frequent occasions for this port. 

I beg your Excellency will accept the expressions of my 
very high respect & esteem. Th : Appleton. 

His Excellency 
Gov: Miller 
ISTo. Carolina. 

34 North Caeolina Historical Commission. 

Thomas Appleton to James Monroe ' 

Leghorn, Yth October, 1816. 
The Honorable James Monroe, 

Secretary of State, Washington. 

In the early part of last month, I received, through the 
medium of Mr. King, Secretary of the Legation to Russia, 
the letter you honored me with, in date of the 27th of May, 
relating to the statue, which the State of Xorth Carolina 
has decided to erect, to the late illustrioiLS General Wash- 
ington. I beg you will believe. Sir, that no event could be 
more agreeable to me than in the superintendence of the 
commission, and that the assiduous attention which I shall 
devote to its accomplishment will justify the confidence you 
have thus reposed in me. Mr. Canova has accepted the com- 
mission in terms highly honorable to our country, for most 
assuredly he would have declined a proposition from, any 
sovereign! in Europe, owing to the immense engagements he 
had previously entered into. His opinion is, that it ought 
to be sitting, as the senate chamber is only sixteen feet in 
height, and that in this attitude, to use his own modest ex- 
pression, ''I can thus give a greater force to my feeble genius, 
animated wdth the ardent zeal with which I am to render 
myself worthy of so great a subject." Mr. King having pur- 
sued his journey towards Petersburg, he has resigned over 
to my care, entirely the charge. I have very fully wi'itten to 
Governor Miller, on the subject of the attitude, together with 
some observations on the emblematical figures intended for 
the pedestal, for as I did not think myself at liberty to vary 
a line from the tenor of the instructions, though very gener- 
ally expressed, I am compelled therefore, to await his reply. 
Being myself the possessor of the original bust of General 
Washington, formed in plaster, by Cerrache, in the United 
States, it will greatly facilitate the execution of the likeness, 

1 Copy of A. L. S. in the Department of State, Washington. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 35 

and the passion with which Mr. Canova seems so ardently 
inflamed for onr country, will, I am confident, produce a 
monument, unexampled in the present age, but my single 
apprehension, I confess is, that he will make him a god, 
instead of the greatest of men. From the first moment, I 
was persuaded he would urge a sitting posture, as better 
adapted to a senate hall, where every one is seated, and will 
be thus more on a level with the eyes of the spectators, 
besides, it is consistent with the usage of the most enlightened 
periods of sculpture. I have not shown hitherto Mr. 
Canova the drawing which has been sent for to be sculptured 
on the pedestal, as the figaires even to my own very limited 
knowledge of the theory of the art, do not in a direct manner, 
rise out of the subject; for unity is as indispensable a requi- 
site in works of sculpture, as it is in painting or dramatic 
j)ieces. One of the figures is designed for the goddess of 
liberty, and the other for Ceres, or Flora, for which of these, 
however, it is not possible to determine, as she is adorned 
with the attributes of both. I have, therefore, taken the liberty 
to state my objections to them to Governor Miller, recom- 
mending at the same time, in order that unity of subject may 
be preserved throughout, that the sides of the pedestal should 
be ornamented with some of the great traits in the life of the 
general, thus they Would at once lead to the recollections of 
the virtues with which he was so singularly conspicuous, and 
in adopting this mode, I believe^ we should write^ [sic] the 
usage of the m,ost enlightened ages of antiquity with the 
universal practice of modern times. 

Th. Appleton. 

1 Unite. 

36 NoKTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

Montford Stokes to Governor Miller^ 

AVashington" City, February 10th, 1817. 
Dear Sir, 

Perceiving that the Legislature of JSTorth Carolina at their 
last Session, again took up the consideration of the former 
resolutions, relative to the monumental Statue of Genl. Wash- 
ington,^ I take the liberty of enquiring what the situation of 
that business is at present ? and "vvhat steps have been taken 
since I left the State. I do not do this to gratify an idle 
curiosity, but from a desire that the Statue intended to be 
procured shall possess as many of the features of the deceased 
General, as it is now in the power of the State to obtain. 
With this view I herewith enclose you an Extract of a letter 
from Mrs. E. P. Custis of Virginia to Mr. Hopkinson, a 
member of Congress, on that subject.^ In the correspond- 
ence which you laid before the Assembly during last Session, 
I observed that it was strongly recommended by some of 
those who had been consulted, that the Statue should be made 
upon the ancient models, that is to say, as to the costume or 
drapery, inasmuch as the fashion of Modern Military dresses 
is liable to change. In either case I think it would be 
desireable that as much of the form and features of General 
Washington as possible, should be preserA^ed in the Statue. 

1 A. L. S. Montford Stokes, United States Senator from North Caro- 
lina, 1816-1823. 

2 Tliis was a resolution of inquiry as to what action the Governor had 
taken to carry into effect the resolution authorizing the purchase of the 
statue. After receiving the Governor's reply, the Legislature passed a 
resolution approving his actions. 

3 "You have no doubt felt much pleasure from the resolution of North 
Carolina to erect a statue or some other monument to the memory of 
our great father, but as the first of sculptors, Canova, is to execute the 
work, I am very desirous that the exact model of his form and features 
should be sent. I possess a small full length picture of the General, 
painted by Colonel Trumbull. The whole figure is General Washing- 
ton, the Creator's work, only more perfect. The face was his many 
years past, but the form was his to the day of his death. Would it not 
be well to have an accurate drawing made from my portrait and sent 
to Italy?" 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 37 

If you think with, me, and with the lady from whose letter 
I have made the extract, an artist can be employed at a very 
small expense to trace the outlines of the portrait in the pos- 
session of Mrs. Custis. 

I am. Dear Sir, with great respect 
Your ohedt Servant 

M. Stokes 
His Excellency 
Governor Miller. 

Governor Miller to Montf ord Stokes ' 

Executive Office ]^. C. 

Raleigh 19th March 1817. 

Upon my return home a few days ago I found a letter in 
the office from you, containing an extract from a letter of 
Mrs. E. P. Custis of Virginia, and as it is certainly desirable 
that as m;uch as possible of the form and features of the Gen- 
eral should be transfused into the Statue, I would take the 
Iil)erty of troubling you to have this painting executed (pro- 
vided it can be done for a moderate price) and I will cause it 
to be sent to Canova. 

With much respect 
Your obt. Servant 
Honble Will: Miller 

Montford Stokes 
Wilkes County 

Governor Miller to Thomas Appleton ^ 

Executive Office X. C. 
Raleigh 19th March 1817. 

Your letters of the 20th of September and 1st of October 
1816, informing [me] of the contract made with Canova, for 

1 Governor's Letter Book. 

2 Governor's Letter Book. 

38 ISToRTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

a Statue of Genl, Washington, for the State of North Caro- 
lina, have been received and for the prompt attention you 
have given to this business, be pleased to accept my acknowl- 
edgments. ***** 

I am not at all tenacious of the inscription sent by Mr. 
King, and am perfectly willing to leave that and the attitude 
to yours and the artist's taste. Any incident in the life of 
Washington which you may select will be pleasing to me. 
A wish has been expressed by Mrs. E. P. Custis of Virginia, 
a relation of the Generals, that a drawing should be made 
from a Portrait in her possession, and sent to Canova, as 
she seems to think (to use her own language) "the exact 
model of his form and features," could be obtained from that. 
The portrait alluded to was taken by Col. Trumbull. As 
soon as this painting can be had, I will cause it to be trans- 
mitted to you. But the work need not be delayed in its prog- 
ress for this. ***** 

With the most respectful consideration 
Your obt. Servant 

Thomas Appleton Esqr., Will: Miller 

American Consul 
at Leghorn. 

Joseph G. Swift to Governor Miller^ 

E'ew York May 8, 1817 
Dear Sir, 

The liberal conduct of the State of ISTorth Carolina ex- 
hibited in authorizing the employment of Canova to execute 
agreeably to his taste a statue of the man wbo was "first in 
War, first in Peace and first in the Hearts of his Country- 
men," has inspired a wide spread respect for the State over 
which you preside. Those who have many friends in that 
State, as I have, whose minds are intelligent, and whose feel- 

1 A. L. S. Joseph G. Swift, Brigadier-General U. S. Army, and Chief 
of Corps of Engineers at New York. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 39 

ings are exalted, have received by this exhibition of senti- 
ment a double portion of gratification. 

I learn from Gov. Hawkins/ that it is desirable to have a 
Portrait of Washington to send to Italy. A friend of mine 
in this City, Mr. H. Pierpont, has an original fnll length 
Portrait of Washington, painted by Stewart for Washing- 
ton's friend the late Mr. Constable, (Father in law of Mr. 
Pierpont). It is the Portrait from which was taken that 
presented to the Marqnis of Lansdoun, and is deemed to be 
every way Eqnal to that celebrated piece. Mr. Pierpont 
will with pleasure allow the picture to be used. I recommend 
Mr. John M. Jarvis, of this City, a distinguished artist, to 
paint the Portrait. Mr. Jarvis is peculiarly happy in pour- 
traying the character of the subject which he paints. My 
aid in furthering any views you may have upon this subject, 
are [sic] at your service. 

With gTeat respect and regard 
Dear sir. 

Your obt. Hum Serv 

J. G. Swift 
To His Excellency William Miller 

North Carolina 

Thomas Appleton to Governor Miller^ 

Leghorn 6th November 1818 
His Excellency 
William Miller 

Govr. of No. Carolina 

* * -Sr * * * * 

I am truly sensible. Sir, of the high confidence you have 
reposed in me, in leaving intirely to my feeble judgment, 
the appropriate figures which will adorn the four sides of 

1 Probably William Hawkins, Governor of North Carolina, 1811-14. 

2 A. L. S. 

40 ISToRTH Carolixa Historical Commission. 

the piedestal of Washington ; and as the great distance which 
separates us, seemed an insurmountable obstacle to discus- 
sing the propriety of the selection I should make, thus I at 
once determined on the various emblematical figures, and 
which are now under the hands of the sculptors. I am well 
aware of the innumerable opinions which will be passed on 
them; if thej obtain the suffrage of the judicious, it is every 
thing which can be hoped: the censures of the injudicious, 
are praises not intended. The inscription is placed on the 
architrave of the front part of the piedestal ; below is repre- 
sented Lord Cornwallis delivering his swurd to Genl "Wash- 
ington ; in both gTOupes appear about twelve military figiires. 
ISTo. 2 represents Washington resigning his commission into 
the hands of the President of the legislature at the close of 
the War. l^o. 3 is Washington receiving the unanimous 
suffrage, which places him at the head of the government, 
and No. 4, is Washington holding a plough drawn by two 
oxen ; behind, is a humble Cottage, near to which are seen 
Ceres and Mercury, with their suitable emblems. These 
appeared to my mind, the four most interesting epochs of 
his life; and as they are sculptured by the most able hands, 
I hope, Sir, they will receive your approbation. I was in 
expectation, agreeably to your letter, to have received from 
you the portrait you mentioned as belonging to a lady of 
the family of the General ; but as this has never reached me, 
the likeness can only be taken from the bust made by Cer- 
rachi, and which I sent to Mr. Caiiova for that purpose. In 
the course of 1819, the Statue will be compleated; previous 
to which, I beg your instructions as to the mode of trans- 
porting it to the U : States. A public vessel would be gTeatly 
preferable to a merchant ship, for few of the latter could 
receive under cover so large a mass. My opinion was, that 
the whole expense would be comprised in Ten thousand dol- 
lars ; but I now find, though I can not say what the expenee 
of packing and transporting to Civita-Vecchia will be, yet 
we mav roundlv say. Eleven thousand dollars ; and as the 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 41 

latter payments are drawing near, and wishing, to be in 
readiness to meet them, I have, therefore, now drawn on your 
Excellency, in date of this day, and in favor of my nephew 
Thomas Perkins Jun, of Boston, for Four thousand three 
hundred and forty-six Spanish dollars, making the whole 
smn of Eleven thousand dollars, which shall be accounted 
for by me, in the final adjustment of the total expense of 
the monument. I beg your Excellency will accept the re- 
newed expressions of my great esteem and respect. 

Th: Appleton. 
His Excellency 
'• William Millek 

Governor of the State 
of ISTorth Carolina 

Governor Branch to Smith Thompson, Secretary of 
the Navy ' 

Executive Office Xo. Ca. 
Raleigh Octr 8th 1819. 

By an act of the Legislature of iSTorth Carolina the Exe- 
cutive of the State ^vas required to obtain from some eminent 
sculptor a marble Statue of the [renowned ?] father of his 
country, Gen. George Washington to be preserved in the 
public buildings of the State at Raleigh. 

In obedience to this injunction a contract was made 
through the polite and patriotic aid of Mr. Appleton the 
United States Consul at Leghorn with Mr. Canova, of Rome 
and the former gentleman continuing his attentions to the 
subject has lately informed the Executive of ISTorth Carolina 
that the same will be finished by the beginning of the next 
year and in a style w'orthy of the reputation of the eminent 
artist to whose execution the task was assigned. 

It is also understood that much difficulty will occur in 

1 A. L. S. John Branch, Governor of North Carolina. 1817-1820. 

42 !N"oRTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

transferring this monument from Italy to the United States 
in consequence of the bulkiness of the mass, few commercial 
vessels being prepared to receive a body of its size under 
cover of their decks. 

Under these circumstances I have taken the liberty to 
request that if it will not interfere too much with the public 
service that one of its vessels when about to return to the 
United States may be permitted to visit Rome and take 
charge of it to this country. 

I trust sir that this request will not be considered as un- 
worthy the notice or consideration of the Government of the 
United States. The Statue though the contribution of an 
individual State is consecrated to the memory of him who 
devoted his life to the service of all and must be regarded as 
a kind of National property and its safe transportation to 
the United States a just object of ISTational solicitude. 
I have the honor to be, 
With the highest respect 
Your obt St 

Jno. Branch 

The Honhle 

Smith Thompson 

Secretary of the ISTavy 

Smith Thompson, Secretary of the Navy, to 
Governor Branch ^ 

j^AVY Department. 

Deer 23d 1819 


I have the honour to acknowledge the receipt of your letter 
of the 8th of October last, upon the subject of affording 
transportation of a marble Statue of the late General George 
Washington, from Rome to the United States. 

Various considerations are to be taken into view in the 
performance of this service. It is desirable to know the 

iL. S. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 43 

dimensions of the Statue, to determine the practicability of 
the Ship's receiving- it on board, and the proper place for 
its deposit. As the navigation affords no suitable anchorage 
at or near Rome, a Ship of War could not take the Statue 
on board nearer than ISTaples or Leghorn, and as Thomas 
Appleton Esquire, Consul of the United States, is resident 
at the latter place, that port would be preferred. 

The United States Ship Columbus will sail hence by the 
1st of February, and the consequent return of the Ship 
Franlvlin might afford the conveyance to the United States. 
But as there is no port in JSTorth Carolina to which that Ship 
could proceed, it would become necessary to provide for a 
second transportation, by some vessel coastwise from Boston 
to the place in Xorth Carolina, which should be designiated. 

Upon receipt of your answer to these observations I will 
give an order to the Commanding j^aval Officer in the Medi- 
terranean, to perform this service, if it shall be deemed 
practicable and not delay the Ship at Leghorn beyond a rea- 
sonable period. 

The object, as it respects the State of North Carolina, 
will receive all the attention of this Department to facilitate 
its accomplishment. 

I have the honor to be. 

With high respect and consideration, 
Your Excellency's most obedient servant 

Smith Thompson 

To His Excellency John Beanch 

Governor of the State of North Carolina 

44 ISToKTir Carolina Historical Commission. 

Governor Branch to Commodore William Bainbridge ' 

Executive Office No. Carolina 

Raleigh February 15th 1820. 

Enclosed is a letter to Mr. Appletoii United States Consul 
at Leghorn through whose polite agency a marble Statue of 
the immortal Washington has been executed by the celebrated 
Marquis Canova for the State of !N"orth Carolina. 

As the Statue is now complete and ready for transporta- 
tion to this country and as a merchant vessel will not be able 
to take the same under cover, I deemed it advisable on the 
suggestion of Mr. Appleton to apply to the ISTavy Department 
of the United States to furnish the requisite facilities. This 
has been promised by the Gentleman who presides in that 
Department at this time, as will appear by a reference to 
the enclosed transcript. 

Your attention to the business will I am confident be most 
'cheerfully and patriotically afforded, and permit me as the 
Representative of the State of ISTorth Carolina, to assure you 
that we shall at all times cherish a high sense of the obli- 
gation conferred. 

With the highest respect 
I am your very obt Servant 

John Branch 
Commodore Bainbridge 

Commodore William Bainbridge to Governor Branch^ 

U S Ship Columbus 
Hampton Roads, 30th March 1820 

Your Excellency's Letter of the 15th ulto enclosing a 
Letter for Mr. Appleton, the United States Consul at Leg- 
horn, has come to my hands, and I have the pleasure to 
assure you that it will afford me much gratification to aid 

1 Grovernor's Letter Book. 

2 A. L. S. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 45 

as far as will be in my power, the transportation of the 
Statue of the Immortal Washington ! which the patriotism 
of the State of jSTorth Carolina has directed to be made in 

I have the honor to be 

With great respect, Your Excellency's 
obt. Sert Wm Bainbkidge 

■To His Excellency John Branch 
Governor of the State of 
North Carolina 

Thomas Appleton to Governor Branch ^ 

Leghorn 1st June 1820 
His Excellency 
The Governor of 
]^orth Carolina. 

I regret greatly, sir, this disaster^ in a particularly manner 
as it necessarily occasions a delay in Payments to Mr. Can- 
ova who has now completed the Statue and of course requires 
the completion of the sum stipulated. This Statue is a Chef 
d'ouvre of sculpture ; as are likewise the basso relievos on 
the four sides of the pedestal. I must then. Sir, solicit 
your most early attention and that you would as speedily as 
possible adopt somie mode to make the indispensable remit- 
tance in order to obtain the Statue from the hands of the 
sculptor ; and at the same time you will have the goodness to 
point out by what conveyance you are desirous it should be 
sent to the United States. It can be conveyed to Civita- 
Vecchia by Eoman boats and may then be received by the 
vessel you may direct. I have some doubts if the hatch-ways 

1 Governor's Letter Book. 

2 Refers to the loss of $3,000 by the failure of Thomas Perkins, Jr., 
of Boston, to whom the money had been sent to be transmitted to 
Appleton for the final payment to Canova. 

46 ISToRTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

of our Merchant vessels are sufficiently wide to receive it. 
A ship of War would on all accounts be preferable. I beg 
your Excellency to be persuaded, that I could not have de- 
voted more feeling and interest to the Statue of my natural 
father, than I have given to that of the political father of 
our country. It is from the hands of the first Artist the 
world has produced, since the period of ISTero the Emperor 
and the important events in the life of our hero which are 
represented in basso relievos on the sides of the pedestal, 
are Wrought with a far superior hand to the relievos, either 
on the column of Trajan or on the triumphal arch of Con 
stantine for sculpture had declined for more than a century 
before Architecture had risen to that perfection which leaves 
only the power to admire without the genius to imitate. 
The pedestal was sculptured by Mr. Eaimon de Trentanove 
a young man of only six and twenty years, the first scholar 
of Canova and strongly recommended to me by the latter as 
the most capable in Rome. His genius is of a sublime cast 
and will most assuredly rise at least to the greatness of his 
master. He is personally known and admired by Mr. Russell 
and General Harper both of whom he copied in marble dur- 
ing their late visit to Rome. It remains then only to solicit 
your early attention and that funds may be as speedily as 
possible placed at my disposal to terminate the payments. 
I will merely observe that the best remittances are by the way 
of London and that Mr. Samuel Williams an American 
banker in that city is reputed to possess a very ample fortune 
and enjoys the full confidence of our most careful merchants. 
Accept, Sir, the renewed expression of the high respect 
with which I have the honor to be Your Excellency's 
Obedient Servant 

Th: Appleton 

Canova's Statue of Washington". 47 

Thomas Appleton to Governor Branch ' 

Legiioen, ISth April 1821. 
To His Excellency J. Bkanch 

Govr of the State of No Carolina. 

I had the honor to address Yonr Excellency, a few lines 
on the 30th of March, by the U. S. Ship Peacock, Captn. 
Brown, who departed from hence, on that day for Civita- 
Yecchia, to receive on board, the Statue of Washington, 
sculptured by Canova, for the State of l^orth-Carolina; from 
which port, he sailed on the 14th of the present month, having 
received the Statue, and the piedestal. In the first letter, 
with which I was honored by your predecessor Governor 
Miller, I was requested to loan the colossal bust, in gesso, by 
Cerrachi, of Washington, to serve as a model, in sculpturing 
the Statue ; it was therefore conveyed to Rome for that pur- 
pose; he at the same time added, he should send me a paint- 
ing of the General, in the hands of Mrs. Custis ; but as this 
likeness never reached me, the Statue was necessarily com- 
pleated, singly from the bust I have mentioned. That this 
bust was the original likeness, taken by the celebrated Cer- 
racchi, from life, I now inclose you, copy of the certificate 
of William Lee, esq. then Consul at Bordeaux,^ and at pres- 
ent first Auditor of the treasury; as likewise, the certificate 
of Mrs. Peters, who purchased it from Cerracchi, on his re- 

1 A. L S. 

2 "I the undersigned Consul of the United States of America for the 
port and district of Bordeaux, do hereby certify tliat the bust of Wash- 
ington, in gesso, now in possession of Thomas Appleton, Esqr., Ameri- 
can Consul at Leghorn, was to my certain knowledge, purchased by Mr. 
Theodore Peters, a very respectable merchant of this city, of Monsieur 
Cerrachi, a distinguished Italian artist, who took it himself in Phila- 
delphia from life; and that it is considered as the best likeness ever 
taken of Washington, indeed, it is said to be the only true likeness taken 
of Washington from life. 

Bordeaux, July 1st, 1809. 
Signed to original Wm. Lee. 

Th: Appleton." 

48 North Caeolina Histokical Commission. 

turn from the U States, to Bordeaux. In my first letter to 
Governor Miller, to which I beg your reference, I mentioned 
the reasons of Mr. Canova, for preferring a sitting attitude 
of the Statue, as more appropriate for a public hall, and 
indispensable from the lowness of your Senate Chamber. In 
relation to the emblems on the four sides of the piedestal, I 
offered various reasons, that they should be allusive, of the 
most memorable events in the life of the hero, as they keep 
the mind of the spectator, solely intent on the subject; and 
that unity of action, being as indispensable a requisite in 
works of sculpture, as they are acknowledgd to be, in dramatic 
writings : — indeed, it is conformable to the invariable practice 
of ancient Greece and Rome, and the usage of modern times. 
The reply of Governor Miller, was certainly flattering to 
me, in fully approving my suggestions ; but he extended his 
acquiescence, further than I w^ished, as he left entirely, to my 
feeble judginent, to determine the most important epochs, 
in the life of the General. The latter part of his confidence, 
I should unquestionably have declined, if I had not have re- 
flected on the great distance which separates us, and that in 
waiting for his reply, it would have caused a delay in the 
work, of at least six mouths. Thus I combined the four peri- 
ods, which you will perceive sculptured, in bassi-relievi, on 
the four sides, to wit — 1st. The Surrender of Cornwallis ; 
2d. The resignation of Washington, at the close of the war; 
3d. He is seen holding the plough ; and on the 4th He is 
accepting the Presidency of the U States. All the figures were 
sculptured by Mr. Trentanove, the first scholar of Canova, 
and in execution, not inferior, to the finest works of an- 
tiquity. This young artist, stands in the first class of Rome ; 
and it is already foreseen, that he will, at a day not far dis- 
tant, perhaps, rival the greatest artist the world now ao- 
knowdedges. He is personally known to General Harper, and 
also to Mr. Russell, late Minister at Sweeden, and w*hose 
busts, he sculptured in marble. I am sensible the whole, will 
attract infinite criticism, especially from the unintelligent ; 

* Canova's Statue of Washington. 49 

if it is approved by the judicious, it is every thing that can 
be wished; the censures of the injudicious, are praises not 
intended. You will receive inclosed, Sir, my account for 
the cost, and expenses on the Statue, balance due me, four 
hundred and eighty seven dollars and 50 cents — say 487. 
Dollars 50 Cts. You will likewise find herewith, the 
vouchers of Mr. Canova and Mr. Trentanove. Your Excel- 
lency will perceive, I have not made any charge in my ac- 
count, for my attentions, during four years, to the comple- 
tion of this comimission ; however, should it be thought, that 
they merit a pecuniary recompense, the amount is entirely 
submitted to your views of my services, and may be with the 
balance, remitted into the hands of my friends, Messrs John 
Astor and Son of New York. 

I now forward to your Excellency engravings of two views 
of the Statue, which I beg your acceptance of. It then only 
remains for me, to express my gi'ateful sense of the high con- 
fidence which has been placed in me by the State over which 
you preside, and to beg your Excellency will accept the 
assurances of the great resj)ect, with which I have the honor 
to be. 

Your very obedient servant, 

Th: Appleton 
His Excellency 
GovR Branch 
ISTorth Carolina 
U. S. A. 

50 iN'oRTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

Account of Thomas Appleton Against the State of 
North CaroHna^ 

The Government of the State of ISTorth-Carolina, to Thos, 
Appleton, Consul, Leghorn, Dr. 

1821. To cash pd Antonio Canova, of Rome, for 
a colossal Statue of Washington, in 
marble, as Per or dr. of Govr. Miller of 
sd. State, in the year 1816, 3000 Roman 
Golden Zechines, as Per enclosd receipt, 
which at the excha. on Leghoni in Sil- Dollars 

ver, are equal to Sp. Dollars 7107 

To cash paid Raimon de Trentanove, of 
Rome, first Scholar of Canova, for the 
piedestal of sd. Statue, with the bassi- 
rilievi on the four sides, & Sculptured 
under the direction of Canova, 1700 
Rodman Golden Zechines, as Per enclosed 
receipt, which at the exchange on Leg- 
horn, are equal in Silver, to Dollars.... 4044 

Dollars 11,151 


1821. To cash p'd xVnto. Canova, for Govt, 
duties on exportation of Statue 
case, cloth, cords, packing & por- 
terage to the Tyber. Dolls 85.50 

To cash pd R. Trentanove for case, 
cloth, packing, and porterage of 
the piedestal to the Tyber 45.50 

To pd transporting both to Civita- 

Vecchia , 18.40 

To cash pd transpg from Carrara, 
my colossal bust by Cerrachi, to 
serve as a model for the Statue.... 5.00 

lA. D. S. Enclosed in letter to Gov. Branch, April 18, 1821. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 51 

To pd postage during four years, to 

& from Rome, relating to Statue, 

to Amsterdam, London, etc., on 

remittances amounting to 127 

Letters reed, or franked here in 

reply, on the Subject of the 

Statue & Piedestal 60.00 

To expenses to Rome, to engage the 

Statue & emblems 122.00 


Spanish Dollars 11,487.50 

Leghorn 18. April 1821. 

E. E. Th: Appleton 

Dr. The Government of the State of Korth-Carolina in 

Acct. current with Thos. Appleton Consul Leghorn.^ 


April To amount of Colossal Statue of Washing- Dollars 

ton and charges, as annexed 11,487.50 



July. By cash reed for my drafts on Daniel 
Cromelin & Sons of Amsterdam for 17,- 
304.3 florins, being the net amount, they 
informed me, were at my disposal, for 
the accot. of State of ]^o. Carolina, and 
which produced here, at the then excha. Sp : Dols. 
Dollars 6,654 

1821 By cash reed of R & W. Pulsford, London, 
as Per their letter, authorizing me to 
draw on them for 4346 Dollars 4346 


1 A. D. S. Enclosed in letter of April 18, 1821. 

52 North Caeolina Historical Commission. 

Bala, due Thos. Appleton 487.50 

Dollars 11,487.50 

Leghorn 18. April 1821. 

E. E. Th: Appleton 

Commodore William Bainbridge to Governor 
Franklin ' 

U. S. Ship Columbus, 
Gibraltar Bay, 19 May, 1821. 
Dear Sir, 

I have the pleasure to inform you that I have on board 
this ship the Statue of General Washington, made by Canova 
at Rome for the State of North Carolina; which I shall 
convey to the United States (probably to the port of Boston) 
whither I expect to sail in the course of ten days. 

My letter to you of the 1st of July last will have informed 
you of my having sent the Frigate Guerriere to Leghorn for 
the purpose of taking the Statue to America, and that it 
was not then finished, but that I should not be unmindful 
of it. In March last I sent the Peacock sloop to Leghorn 
in expectation of her finding the Statue there, in which, how- 
ever, I was disappointed. 

Captain Brown then proceeded, agi*eeably to my orders 
to Civita Vecchia, and thence to Rome ; when the Statue was 
sent to the former place, put on board the Peacock, and 
brought to this place ; where it was removed to this ship, 
and in her, I trust, it will be safely conveyed to the shores 
of our beloved country. 

I beg leave to assure you, Sir, that it has afforded me 
much pleasure to attend to the request of the Executive of 

iL. S. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 53 

the patriotic State of l^orth Carolina relative to the Statue 
of the Great and Good Washington. 

I am, Sir, with sentiments of high respect. 
Your obedient servant 

Wm. Bainbridge 
To His Excellency the 

Governor of N^orth Carolina. 

Commodore William Bainbridge to Governor 
Franklin ' 

U. S. Ship Columbus, 
Boston Harbour, 23 July, 1821. 

From the inclosed duplicate of my letter of the 19th of 
May last, your Excellency will perceive that the Statue of 
Washington, made by Canova for the State of North Caro- 
lina, is on board of this Ship ; which arrived here yesterday. 
It will be held subject to your order. - 
I have the honour to be, 

With great respect, yr. obt. servt. 

Wm. Bainbridge 

P. S. I herewith send a letter to you from Mr. Appleton, 
Consul of the U States at Leghorn. 

To His Excellency the Governor 
of N'orth Carolina, 

iL. S. 

2 From Boston the statue was conveyed to Wilmington, N. C, by 
water, thence up the Cape Fear river to Fayetteville, thence overland to 
Raleigh, where it was set up in the rotunda of the State House and 
unveiled, December 24, 1821. An account of the ceremonies can be 
found in The Raleigh Register, Dec. 28, 1821. 

54 [N^ORTH Caeolina Historical Commission. 

Resolutions of the General Assembly ' 

Resolved that the thanks of the General Assembly of the 
State of North Carolina, be given to Comniodore William 
Bainbridge, for his politeness and attention in the trans- 
mission of the Statue of Genl. George Washing-ton from Italy 
to this State. 

And be it further Resolved that his Excellency the Gov- 
ernor be requested to send a copy of the foregoing resolution 
to Commodore Bainbridge. 

Governor Holmes to Marquis Canova ^ 

Executive Office, ]S[o. Carolina. 

Raleigh, July 4, 1822. 
Marquis Canova,, 


In obedience to a Resolution of the Legislature of this 
State I derive much pleasure in making known to you the 
high sense and acknov^ledgments the citizens of North Caro- 
lina, cherish for the taste and skill with which you have exe- 
cuted that admirable specimen of sculpture, the Statue of 
General George Washington. 

The sublimity and elegance of this composition, combining 
freedom, grace, and majesty, will long live a sacred memorial 
of a grateful Republic to his memory, and a proud mjonu- 
ment of the divine genius of Canova. 

It commands the wonder and applause of the Western 
Hemisphere, and will prove to the young enthusiastic artist 
of the New World, what the sublime labours of Praxiteles 
and Phidias, those favorite sons of Greece, did to their imita- 
tive brethren and admiring spectators, chaste models of ad- 
miration and perfectio;n. 

I likewise, Sir, avail myself of the honor to transmit to you 

1 Journal of the General Assembly, passed December 18, 1821. 
- Governor's Letter Book. Gabriel Holmes, Governor of North Caro- 
lina 1821-1824. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 55 

the unanimous resolution of the Senate and House of Repre- 
sentatives, with assurances of my high respect and esteem 
for the Marquis Antonio Canova. 

Gael: Holmes 

Thomas Jefferson to Governor Holmes ^ 

MoNTicELLO, August 3. 23. 

I take the liberty of transmitting to you the extract of a 
letter received from Mr. Appleton our Consul at Leghorn 
bearing date the 2d of April of the present year.' I have 
thought it a duty to be the channel of this explanation from 
him, as having, perhaps, been in some degTee, the instrument 
of his being employed in directing the Execution of the 
Statue of General Washing-ton, which will ever be a dis- 
tinguishing and unrivalled possession of your State. I pray 
you to consider me, however, as merely the transmitter of 
this paper, meaning to take no jiart in its object, which be- 
longs solely to the justice and liberality of the State; perhaps 
it is incumbent on me to say, that I have known Mr. Appleton 
nearly forty years, that during the greater part of that time, 
I have been in intimate correspondence w[ith him either 
official or private ; that he has been so long in the service of 
the United-States, faithful, honest, diligent, and honorably 
poor. Should you think proper, to make the acknowledg- 
ments of the State for his services in a pecuniary form, which 
his circumstances induce him to prefer, I have not the least 
idea what his expectations may be, perhaps, the sum which 
has passed thro' his hands may furnish some measure. But 

1 A. L. S. 

2 This letter refers to the failure of the Legislature to make proper 
compensation to Appleton for his troubla and for the use of his bust of 
Washington. This oversight was remedied at the next session by the 
appropriation of $500 for Mr. Appleton. 

56 North Caeolina Historical Commission. 

all this rests with your excellency, to whom I tender the 
assurance of my high respect and consideration. 

Th: Jefferson. 

ri[is] E[xcellency] Gabriel Holmes, 
Governor of K. C. 

Governor Holmes to Thomas Appleton ' 

Executive Office, ISTo. Carolina, 

Raleigh, April 5th 1824. 
Thomas Appleton, Esqr. 

American Consul at Leghorn, 


I have the pleasure to transmit to you through the medium 
of Mr. Lenox, Merchant of I^ew York, five hundred dollars 
($500) by a Resolution of the Legislature of Worth Carolina, 
in Session 1823, as an acknowledgment of your services and 
Classick taste, in procuring for them and the citizens of the 
State, that inimitable Statue of Genl. Washington, with the 
very appropriate and impressive devices of our l^ational 
history in Bass Relief, on the Pedestal. 

This tribute of respect, I beg leave to tender you, mth 
assurances of my great regard for your talents and judgiuent, 
in putting us in possession of that truly Patriotic and orna- 
mental specimen of Sculpture, the boast and pride of Is^orth 

I am. Sir, 

With great respect 
Your obt. hbl. Servt. 

Gael: Holmes 

i Governor's Letter Book. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 57 

Ball Hughes to Thomas Devereux ^ 

[June] 27th [1831] 
To Thomas P. Devereux 


Plaving the honor of enjoying Mr. Robert Lennox's ac- 
quaintance he has suggested to me that I might address you 
respecting your late loss of your Statue of Genl Washington. 
I wias exceedingly grieved to see by the Public Journals the 
devastation you have suffered from fire.' Allow me most re- 
spectfully to offer my services for the restoration of that in- 
valuable work. Whatever may be the state of it, it might be 
repaired and those parts entirely destroyed re-carved so as 
to render the joins imperceptible. The expense of a thing 
of this kind would be triffling compared to the Actual Value 
of the Work. Whatever may be its mutilated state it can 
be repaired and I shall consider my visit to this country most 
fortunate should I be the means of preserving to the world 
the Statue of your Immortal Washing-ton and the work of 
that great Artist Canova. 

I have been in this country about two years. My object 
in visiting it was to see the state of the Arts in this New 
World and endeavor to put up one or two national monu- 
ments to bear witness some future day to my having been 
here. I am employed at this moment on a Colossal Marble 
Statue of Genl Hamilton ; likewise a Marble Moninuent life 
size of the late Bishop Hobart. 

The following are among the Gentlemen who have done 
me the honor of sitting to me for their Bust: Chief Justice 
Marshall, Honbl Charles Vaughan, D. Webster Esq., D. B. 
Ogden Esq., Chancellor Kent, Philip Hone Esq., E. Tibbits 
Esq., M. Van Buren Esq., Doctor Hosack, G. Griswold Esq., 
Charles Wilkes Esq., T. Dixon Esq., S. Skinner Esq., T. 
Perkins Esq., of Boston, Honble E. R. Livingston of Louis- 

1 A. L. S. 

2 The burning of tlie State House, and the destruction of Canova's 
Washington, June 21, 1831. 

58 North Carolina Historical Commission. 

iana. Should you feel disposed to treat respecting the Statue, 
I will be happy to visit Raleigh (my expenses for travelling- 
being paid) and give you an estimate of what it would cost 
or a description of the State of it would be sufficient to 
enable me to give to you an idea of the expence. I have lately 
got from England three most clever and experienced marble 

I can give you any references respecting capability and 
shall be most happy to hear from you. Trusting you will 
pardon the liberty of addressing you without the honor of 
a personal acquaintance 

I remain Sir 

Your obent Servant 

Ball Hughes. 
62 Franklin St 
New York. 

Thomas Appleton to Governor Stokes ^ 

Leghorn 10 August 1831. 
To His Excellency 
the Governor of the 

State o-f North Carolina. 

I have learnt, by the journals of the U. States, with a very 
sincere sensibility, the loss, the State of No. Carolina has 
sustained, in the burning of the Senate-house, and the total 
destruction of the noble Statue of Washington, sculptured by 
the great Canova, under my inspection. It was at the request 
of the then Governor of the State, and at the particular de- 
sire of Mr. Monroe, then Secretary of the State for the United 
States, Mr. Canova sculptured the Statue, while the ad- 
mirable emblematical figures on the four sides of the 
piedestal, were sculptured by the inimitable hand of Mr. 
Trcntanove, scholar of Canova, at that period, only 23 years 
of age, and now unquestionably, the first sculptor in Rome, 

lA. L. S. Montford Stokes, Governor of North Carolina, 1830-1832. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 59 

and probably in the world. Mr. Caiiova, then insisted that 
Mr. Trentanove should sculpture all the emblems on the 
piedestal, for as he then assured me, and which has been 
since verified, that this young artist, was in a few years, to 
approach, if not to equal, the first remains of grecian Sculp- 
ture, Mr. Trentanove in my opinion, now stands unrivalled 
in his profession. Many of his works are in the U. S. — at 
Baltimore, Phila,, New York and Boston. I presume, not 
less than a dozen of the busts of Washington, are in those 
cities, for he has greatly improved the likeness of Washing- 
ton, from that formed by Canova, in several journies to 
London and Paris, and which are universally acknowledged 
to approach so near the original features of the hero, as to 
remain unrivalled by any European artist. In a word. Sir, 
a constant habit, in works of ancient and modern Sculp- 
ture, for more than thirty years I have resided in Italy, as 
consul for the U. States, I have no hesitation in pronouncing 
Mr. Trentanove, as the greatest sculptor of the present time 
in Europe. Should the State, over which, your Excellency 
presides, determine to replace the Statue, which has been 
consumed in the burning of your Senate-house, no Sculptor 
as I have before said, exists in Europe, who is able to per- 
form the task, equal to Mr. Trentanove, and should my 
services be useful in overseeing and directing the work, or 
in receiving and paying the stipulated Sums, I beg your 
Excellency will command my best services. The usual con- 
ditions of payment, of works of Sculpture, at Eome, are, 
one half on signing of contract, and the other half when 
compleated. If your archives have not perished in the 
flames, it will be easy to recur to all my correspondence with 
the then Governor of the State, and which Avill shew, that 
the journals of the U. S. are greatly in error, when they 
assert, that the Statue cost, 32,000 Dollars. The real truth 
is, that the Statue, and emblems on the piedestal, together 
with every expence, until shipped by me, on board of one of 
our public Ships of War at Civita Vecchia, for the U. S., 

60 I^ORTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

was Eleven thousand four hundred and eighty Seven Dollars 
and fifty cents, say, 11,487 Dollars and 50 cents, as by ac- 
counts forwarded by me, to the then Governor of the State. 
I can not say with absolute precision, what would be the 
present cost, of a Statue formed from the best models, and 
which are in the possession of Mr. Trentanove, as he is at 
this time in London, where he has been called, by several of 
the most distinguished nobility of England, but I can assure 
you, it would not exceed this sum. I rather suppose, and 
believe, it would be somewhat less. Should the Govern- 
ment of the State, determine to replace the Statue, and to 
confide its execution to Mr. Trentanove, and that my over- 
seeing its accomplishment, should be deemed of utility, I 
beg in this case, your reply may be explicit, as to Attitude, 
Size, and Emblems, with every other requisite information, 
in order, that no time may be lost, in questions and replies, 
at a distance of 4000 miles. It only remains to reassure 
you, that your utmost confidence, and reliance may be placed, 
in the transcendent abilities, fidelity and integrity of Mr. 
Trentanove, and to beg you will accept the expressions of 
the great respect, with which I have the honor to be. 
Your Excellency's very obed Servant 

Tii : Appleton 
Consul of U. S. A. 

The emblems on the four sides of the piedestal, were sug- 
gested and designated by me, from an established principle 
in Sculpture, as in architectural wtorks, to wit, that nO' 
irrevalent emblem, or figure, should be introduced, on any 
part, appertaining to it; for this reason I selected, what I 
judged to be, the four most important epochs in the life of 
the hero. Should you deem any other events more appro- 
priate, it will be necessary to desigTiate them, in case the 
Government of ]^o. Carolina should determine to replace 
the Statue, and that the execution should be confided to Mr, 
Trentanove. The latter, I well remember, sculptured the 

Ruins of Canova's Statue of Washington. Now jn-csiTvcd in llu- Hall (.!' Ilisloiy, Raleigh. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 61 

bust of General Harper, while in Ilom,e, and I also think he 
procured from him, a bust of Washington ; but what I know, 
is, that several busts of Washington, are in the possession 
of many gentlemen of New York. Genl. Harper assured 
me in this city, that not any likeness he had ever seen, ap- 
proached the perfection of those from the hands of Mr. 

Your Excellency will please accept the renewed expres- 
sions of my high respect. 

Th : Appleton. 

Ball Hughes to Governor Stokes ' 

Raleigh December 7th, 1831. 
To His Excellency 

The Goveknok Montford Stokes 


In consequence of your kind permission I this miorning 
remt)ved a portion of the boards which surround Canova's 
great and truly grand Statue of the immortal W^ashington 
for the purpose of carefully ascertaining the full extent of its 
injury, and after therefore a minute survey of many hours 
into every detail of that beautiful and once highly finished 
work, I am truly happy in being able to lay before you the 
following result. 

I find it perfectly within the compass of my powier to 
restore it to all its former beauty, to invest it v^'ith all its 
original grandeur, to give it once more its pure unsullied 
whiteness, its strength durability and form, the latter shall 
not deviate more than the simple cleaning of any Statue 
would demand. In fact I wish it to be clearly and simply 
understood that I would engage to infuse into that work 
all its former greatness and perfection making it bear so 
closely the same appearance that it had before the dreadful 
fire, that the most accustomed eye shall look with wonder 
on its present and future state. 

1 A. L. S. 

62 North Carolina Historical Commission. 

Your Excellency will perceive by the letters I had the 
honor to present you with, that amongst other large works, 
I have been engaged for many months on the restoration of 
the marble Statue of the late Earl of Chatham which some 
fifty years since stood at the intersection of Wall and Wil- 
liam Street in New York. This Figure I by accident dis- 
covered, then laying a neglected and useless piece of Stone 
for old cannon rubbish and lumber to rest against. It was 
considerably m;ore mutilated than the one in question, how- 
ever I purchased it and after bestowing on it months of 
arduous exertion I restored it to its former state, solely for 
the purpose of forwarding my views in relation to the Statue 
here, believing the success of that work would be the best 
recommendation I could bring with me. Of the perfection 
of my labours in regard to it I must leave the many letters 
I brought here to tell, and the praise the Public Press were 
pleased to lavish on me. I have every reason to believe it 
will eventually be placed in the Merchants Exchange in that 
City together with a full sized Statue of Hamilton which I 
have nearly completed for the same Building. I have a 
recommendation from the Committee of that work and about 
sixteen other letters from the most distinguished, talented, 
and respectable men in New York besides some from the 
Right Honble C. Vaughan the British Minister to whom I 
brought letters on my first arrival here. 

I belong to the Royal Academy in London and studied for 
Eight years under the first Sculptor of the Age, and feel 
proud to state, that I am the only one of that institution that 
ever obtained all its medals. I do not state this with any 
feeling of vanity but only as a further claim on your con- 
fidence. My greatest ambition is to be employed to restore 
the Statue alluded to. Should I be employed for that pur- 
pose tis my intention to do it in this City, that all risk of 
transportation may be done away with. This circumstance 
however favourable to the Figure would increase the expence 
attendant on it in consequence of my being compeled for a 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 63 

time to remove my Family and Workmen from New York ; 
however gain is not my object ; fame is a Sculptor's riches. 
I will therefore undertake that the whole cost of it shall 
not exceed Five thousand dollars. In its present state the 
Statue will exist but a few years. Trust me to restore it 
and thus preserve to posterity Canova's finest work, and to 
the world a Statue of its greatest Hero. 
I have the honor to be Sir 

Most Respectfully your Obedient Servant 

Ball Hughes 
His Excellency 

Governor Montford Stokes. 

Report of the Committee on the Restoration of 
Canova's Statue of Washington 

[Dec. 15, 1831]. 

The Joint Select Committee, to whom was referred the 
message of the Governor, communicating the proposition of 
Mr. Ball Hughes to restore to its former condition the 
Statue of Washington belonging to North Carolina, have 
considered the subject, and beg leave respectfully to report : 

Among the regrets occasioned by the late destruction of 
the State House, it is believed by the Committee that none 
have been more deeply or generally felt by the Citizens of 
North Carolina than those which were excited by the muti- 
lation of the monument, which the gratitude of the State 
had caused to be erected to the memory of the Father of his 
Country. True it is, that while a heart beats amongst us to 
which Liberty is dear, or which can swell with admiration 
for Patriotism, the name of Washington raiust live, em- 
balmed in the affections and consecrated by the reverence of 
his countrymen. No storied Urn or animated Bust is needed 
to perpetuate the glories of his achievements, or to rescue 
from oblivion the recollection of his services. But the people 
of this State had a right to be proud of the evidence they 
had exhibited of the intensity with which they delighted to 

64 NoKTH Cakolina Historical Commission. 

cherish his memory. Limited in their means, plain in their 
habits, and economical in their expenditures, on this one 
subject they had indulged a generous magnificence. At their 
bidding, the genius of Canova had given to the marble of 
Carrara the impress of his noble figure, and this last and 
greatest work of the first sculptor of the age was to be seen 
in the Capitol of our unpretending State, gratifying the 
curiosity of our own Citizens, attracting the attention of 
strangers, and fixing the admiration of the lovers of the arts. 
A full heart had thus spoken, and was relieved by this ex- 
pression of its feelings. 

The erection of this Statue by the People and their repre- 
sentatives was the result of a generous impulse of nature. 
But the act was not the less recommended by a sound , and 
sagacious policy. A mionument like this was a book which 
all could read, and w'hich bade the most thoughtless and in- 
attentive to enquire and reflect. To the Legislator, as he 
passed by to the Council hall of the State, as well as to 
the ardent and young of every condition, it taught a lesson 
the most salutary, and not the less impressive because it was 
communicated without the formalities of instruction. While 
it refuted the calumny which stigmatizes republics as un- 
grateful, it taught the [that] true glory is the meed of virtue, 
and that, though temporary popularity may be gained by 
courting public favour, permanent renown, the renown which 
triumphs over the grave, is awarded to him alone who seeks 
the public good with pure and devoted disinterestedness. 
Besides, few sentiments are found to be more congenial with 
Patriotism, or more favourable to public and private virtue, 
than a rational State pride. As no one can love that of 
which he is ashamed so it is impossible not to regard with 
affection the community of which we are proud to be mem- 
bers. The duty of advancing the prosperity, defending the 
rights, and cherishing, improving and perpetuating the insti- 
tutions of our country, is performed with ardour when that 
country stands high in our own estimation and is known to 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 65 

be respected by others. To serve it becomes a pleasure and 
ceases to be a task, when we feel that it is worthy of our 
service; and every, even the humblest, citizen of a free State 
appropriates to himself a portion of the reputation which 
belongs to the State itself. As that reputation is raised, his 
self-respect is increased ; and if self-respect be not itself a 
virtue, it is assuredly one of the best safeguards against the 
degradation of vice. 

Impressed With these sentiments which they entertain in 
common wdth the great body of our People, yet unacquainted 
wdth operations of the kind proposed by Mr. Hughes, and 
comparing the present mutilated and defaced Statue with 
its former well remembered perfect and finished state, the 
Committee entered upon the proposed enquiry, with strong 
fears that an entire restoration was impracticable. They 
rejoice to say that these fears have been dispelled. If con- 
fidence can be reposed in the testimony of the most honoured 
and enlightened men in our land, Mr. Hughes is competent 
to accomplish all that he promises. If a judgment can be 
formed from Avhat he has already done, the task which he 
pledges himself to execute is not beyond his ability. With 
perfect candour he has laid before the Committee the details 
of his intended operations and has invited the freest enquiry 
from every member. Your Committee fully believe that he 
can not merely repair but restore the Statue, perfect, dur- 
able and with all its original grandeur and elegance. He 
engages to do this for the sum of five thousand dollars, to 
be paid to him in such equitable instalments as may be 
arranged betAveen himself and any person whom the Legis- 
lature may designate. Mr. Hughes has also entered into a 
statement of the probable costs and expenses attending the 
proposed undertaking, which satisfies the Corumittee that 
it can not be to him one of much pecuniary emolument. 
Indeed, gain appears to weigh but little in his estimation. 
With the enthusiasm, of an artist devoted to his profession. 

66 JS^ORTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

he seems impelled bj the ambitiou of becoming the restorer 
of the Statue of Washington, and thus to connect his name 
with that of the great Canova. 

One fact, highly honorable to the disinterestedness of Mr. 
Hughes, your Committee take pleasure in stating. A neces- 
sary preliminary step to the restoration of the Statue is the 
making of a perfect cast in Plaister. It is represented to 
your Committee that in all such cases it is usual for the 
artist to retain this model in order that he may be enabled 
to exhibit it as a specimen of his skill. Upon the inti- 
mation of a wish that he would forego this claim, Mr. Hughes 
readily assented, upon condition that he might be permitted 
to present the cast to the University of our State. 

The Statue is the property of the People of !North Caro- 
lina. It cost them a large sum, and in the estimation of 
competent judges its value exceeded the cost. In its present 
condition it is without use and without value. The in- 
clemencies of our atmosphere, unless its injuries be inune- 
diately repaired, must soon destroy it entirely. The duty 
of attempting its restoration ought to be begun now or aban- 
doned altogether. 

In the opinion of your Committee it would be a wasteful 
parsimony by a refusal of five thousand dollars to permit 
the destruction of public property worth five times that sum. 
In their opinion, the abandonment of this once magnificent 
monument to the fate with which it is threatened, would 
subject ITorth Carolina to the just reproach of the other 
States of the Confederacy, of all who venerate the memory 
of Washington, and of the admirers of genius and art 
throughout the civilized world. In their opinion, though 
the People of I'Torth Carolina may be poor they are ready to 
encounter any expenditure which is demanded by a just re- 
spect for themselves and your Committee believe that this 
Legislature would little consult either the character or wishes 
of those whom it represents if it refused to embrace this 
opportunity of re-erecting the Statue of him, who living was 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 67 

always first in the hearts of our fathers, and whose name is 
now enshrined with the same precedence in the affections of 
their sons. 

The Committee unanimonsly recommend the following 
Resolution : 

Resolved that the Governor be authorized and requested 
to make a contract with Mr. Ball Hughes for the restoration 
of the Statue of Washing-ton upon the basis of the principles 
set forth in this Report, and that he be authorized to draw 
warrants on the Treasury from time to time to an amount 
not exceeding five thousand dollars in order to carry such 
contract into effect. 

Respectfully submitted 

Will : Gaston for the Comjnittee.^ 

Governor Stokes to Ball Hughes ^ 

Executive Department 
Raleigh, N. Carolina, January 18th, 1832 
Mr. Ball Hughes, 

'^0 62 Franklin Street N. York. 


I enclose you a copy of the Report on your Representa- 
tion to the Legislature of ITorth Carolina, together with a 
copy of the Resolution adopted on the subject of repairing 
the Statue of Washington. You can therefore commence the 
Work when you think proper; and it is desirable on m'lany 
accounts that you should not delay. You will perceive by 
the tenor of the Resolution that I am not at liberty to enter 
into the contract precisely on the terms stated in your propo- 
sition ; but as I have the greatest confidence in your skill 
and ability I do not apprehend any difficulty with either you 
or myself in making the contract. I will draw in your 

1 The report is in Gaston's handwriting. The Resolution was adopted 
by the House of Commons, January 11, 1832, yeas 86, nays 30; and by 
the Senate, January 13, 1832, yeas 29, nays 21. 

2 Governor's Letter Book. 

68 IsToRTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

favour for One thousand Dollars as soon as yon commence 
the work, and as you progress, will endeavour to comply with 
your terms as nearly as the Resolution authorises. As you 
have the Report and Resolution both before you, it remains 
with you to decide upon the terms of the contract which 
I am authorised to make, and I think they are such as will 
justify your immediate removal and that of your hands and 
materials to this place. 

I am. Sir, with respect, 

Your obedt. Servant M: Stokes. 

Governor Stokes to the General Assembly ^ 

[Nov. 19 1832] 

A resolution of the General Assembly directed that a 
''contract should be made with Mr. Ball Hughes for the 
"restoration of the Statue of Washington upon the basis of 
"the principles set forth in the report of the joint selecc 
"committee on that subject." 

In obedience to this Resolution, a written contract was 
made with Mr. Hughes, and sometime in May last he com- 
menced the undertaking, and so far as I was able to judge, 
in a manner conformable to the principles laid down in the 
Report. Being desirous of removing his family and ma- 
terials to this place, he returned to ISTew York about the first 
of July, under an express promise to return and prosecute 
the work in fifteen days. With a confident reliance upon 
this promise, and to facilitate the speedy removal of his 
family, his workmen, and materials, a sum of money was 
advanced, perhaps beyond the portion of the labor done ac- 
cording to the contract — of this, however, I confess myself 
not a competent judge. The whole sum advanced to Mr. 
Hughes amounts to two thousand eight hundred Dollars. 
Mr. Hughes finding (as I understand from him) that sick- 
ness prevails to an alarming extent in New York, removed 

1 Extract from his annual message, November 19, 1832. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 69 

with his family to 'New Jersey, and has not returned to 
North Carolina. He has since requested that the moulds 
and casts for the repair of the Statue should be forwarded to 
]^ew York, where he intended to prosecute the work. I 
thought proper to forbid the removal of anything pertaining 
to the Statue, as the contract requires that the repairs shall 
be miade in Raleigh. 

William Gaston to Governor Swain' 

New York Novr. 21st 1833. 
My dear Sir, 

I have availed myself of the opportunity presented by 
my visit to this place to see Mr. Hughes and converse with 
him freely in relation to his unexecuted contract for restor- 
ing the Statue of Washington. At the same time I have 
conferred with several gentlemen of great eminence, con- 
versant with the fine arts and well acquainted with Mr. 
Hughes, with a view of enabling me to form an opinion as 
to his ability to execute his engagement. It w^ould be tedious 
and perhaps unprofitable to enter into a detail of the causes 
which have so long delayed the completion of the work. I 
believe that the main one has been pecuniary embarrassment 
proceeding from that inattention to economy too often found 
among eminent artists, unexpected difficulties to which 
strangers are always exposed, and the increased expenditures 
of himself and his family caused by the cholera of last year 
and the panic which it spread so extensively. Of the man's 
skill not a reasonable doubt can be entertained. His wlorks, 
here visible, proclaim it. Nor can I question the sincerity 
of his determination to accomplish his undertaking. I am 
not influenced in this opinion by his declaration merely, but 
by the information of those who know him well, and who 
assure me that he is deeply, most deeply mortified by what 
has occurred. I am satisfied that he fully purposes to do 
all that he has promised, and that he has the skill to effect 

lA. L. S. David L. Swain, Governor of North Carolina, 1832-1835. 

70 ]S[oKTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

this purpose. My only doubt is whether the same pecuniary 
embarrasments which have retarded the work may not yet 
longer delay it. 

I complained to him that he did not return to Carolina 
as soon as the Cholera panic was over and there resume his 
operations. He stated that then he found himself embar- 
rased by Waugh leaving him; that another worknian whose 
name I have forgotten, and who had been retained to assist 
him in the work died just before the time appointed for 
going on, and that before he could get necessary aid he was 
obliged to enter on another work for the means of subsistence. 
I pressed him to go on now. He says he has here workmen, 
a shop, the material, and the necessary machinery, and that 
he can here operate as well (were but his models here) as 
at Raleigh and at one fourth the expense, and he solemnly 
promises that the instant he receives these, which are daily 
expected, he will devote his attention to the work and never 
intermit his labour until he has accomplished it. He asks 
no further payments until he has restored the Statue, and 
pledges himself to go on to Raleigh the moment he has done 
all which can be so much better done here. I asked him 
within what time we might calculate with confidence upon 
the business being compleated, and he answ:ered that with- 
out some unforeseen calamity the Statue should be finally 
restored within twelve months after the models came to 
hand. I am convinced that it would be useless and believe 
that it might be pernicious to resort to legal measures against 
him. He has no money to refund, and the fear of being ar- 
rested has I believe not a little operated to prevent his re- 
turn to the State, 

This then Sir is the situation of the affair. He is able 
to do the work, he fully purposes to do it, and he thinks that 
he can accomplish this purpose within a reasonable time. 
My only fear is that the necessity of procuring immediate 
supplies may divert his attention from the business and pro- 
duce further delays than he dreams of. But as he can not 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 71 

go ou to Raleigh and the moulds are on their way here, no 
great injury can result from a little longer delay; and I can 
not but hope that he will ultimately complete the work to 
the satisfaction of the Citizens of North Carolina. 
Very respectfully and affectionately 
Your friend and obt. Servt. 

Will: Gaston 
His Excellency 

GovEENOE Swain. 

Louis D. Henry to Governor Swain ^ 


July 8th 1834. 
My dear Sie, 

I received your favor requesting me to act as your agent 
in ascertaining what progress Ball Hughes the sculptor was 
making on the work of restoring the statue of Washington, 
and whether in case he should prove faithless in the execu- 
tion of his contract with the State of ISTo. Carolina, there 
was any hope of obtaining pecuniary redress from him by 
legal coercion. 

Knowing the solicitude you have felt in common with our 
fellow citizens of ISTo. C. on this subject, and the pains you 
have taken to procure from ]\[r. Hughes a compliance, with 
his contract, and the necessity of obtaining precise and 
certain information from a variety of creditable sources to 
satisfy the doubts which exist in our State with regard to 
the ability, good faith and pecuniary circumstances of Mr. 
Hughes, I have taken great pains in seeking out information 
from various classes of people, whose candor and veracity 
could not be questioned, some of whom were artists, some 
amateurs and others practical men of business, and all of 
them together knomng Mr. Hughes well, in his personal, 
professional and business character. The result of these 
enquiries is so perfectly satisfactory to me, that you may 

1 A. L. S. 

72 ISToRTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

rely upon it with entire contidenee, and without the shadow 
of a doubt. It is this, that Mr. Hughes is a man of genius, 
in his profession, the heau ideal of enthusiasts and perfectly 
competent to execute the work he has undertaken, but that 
he is faithless in the performance of his contracts, seemingly 
insensible of their moral and honourable obligations, always 
straitened for money and perfectly improvident in the use 
or management of it, and finally so poor that there is no hope 
of indemnity from legal coercion. 

I called upon Mr. Hughes at his work shop, he received 
mo with great politeness and took great pains to show me 
all his works, then in different stages of progress. I admired 
all, but more particularly his Statue of Alcxr. Hamilton 
and bust of our friend Mr. Gaston. The bust of Mr. Gaston 
is the most admirable likeness, the truest to nature and the 
original of all the works of painting or statuary I have ever 
seen. I pointed it out in an instant, although I had upon 
the first recognition of it but an eskance view and was ignor- 
ant that such a work was there or in contemplation. May 
1 venture the passing suggestion that so admirable a likeness 
of a man who is universally esteemed and who is in fact so 
great an ornament of our State ought to be set up in the 
Hall of our State House or in the room of the Supremie 
Court. If the Legislature will not, I am clear the Bar shall 
by permission of the Legislature. I believe the work was 
undertaken by Mr. Hughes of his own accord. Mr. Hughes 
says that he will complete the Statue of Hamilton (which 
he executes for the merchants of this City and which is to 
be set up in the Exchange) in a month or thereabouts, when 
he will immediately proceed to our State and perform his 
contract with it by restoring the Statue of Washington 
This he promises to do in the wannest and most solemn man- 
ner, alledging that he has been prevented from doing it hereto- 
fore from circumstances growing out of his pecuniary diffi- 
culties, but as Hamilton's statue was the first undertaking, 
and so near completion, he must and is compelled to com- 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 73 

plete it, and swears that our Washington shall be the next. 
He is not doing any thing upon our Statue of Washington 
at this time so he informed me, and there was no appearance 
of it in his shop. I took the liberty of insinuating to him 
without being oifensive, the many considerations that en- 
forced the necessity of his immediately completing the 
Statue of Washington, which were connected with his fame, 
the character of Washington, the honour of our State, the 
popular obliquy that threatened the advocates of the measure 
in the Legislature of 1831, the general interest that the 
virtuous in Europe and America felt and manifested in the 
restoration of this Statute, and finally the undying execra- 
tions of the people of No. C. and of all America upon his 
name and memory should their hoj)es be disappointed, be- 
sides the odium and harrassments of an expensive law suit. 
He assented to it all, and swore by the immortal Gods and 
all else that was sacred, the work should be completed and 
before the completion of the new State House. From all 
therefore I have seen or heard relative to him I so far incline 
to believe that he will perform his contract shortly, that I 
would not as yet advise a suit, but persecute him with 
epistolary importunities (as I find most every one has had 
to do here whom he has served in the same way and have 
succeeded) untill all moral constraints are exhausted. 

Truly yours Louis D. Henky 

Robert Donaldson to Governor Swain ^ 

N"ew Yokk Sept. 3rd 1834. 
Dear Sir, 

I have now the pleasure to acknowledge your Letter of 
the 22nd Augt. enclosing a Commnnication for Mr. Hughes, 
which has been delivered to him. 

I am still of the opinion, that it is vain to look for the 
restoration of the Statue by him. He has not finished any 

1 A. L. S. Enbert Donaldson, of New York, tlnoiin;h whose agency 
Governor Swain conimunicated with Hughes. 

74: North Carolina Historical Commission. 

thing (except a mouiiment with some figures in relief in 
Trinity Church) since he came to the Country, but goes on 
taking new orders for Busts etc., receiving partial payments 
in advance and then turning to something else. 

The only service that he can render to ]^orth Ca. for the 
money given, which he will ever perform, is to visit Raleigh 
and pack the Statue, so that it may be shipped to Italy.^ 

I think Greenough would restore it for three thousand 
Dollars in the best manner. 

Yours truly Robert Donaldson 

Bellamy Storer to R. D. W. Connor - 

164 Marlborough St., Boston. 

January 10, 1908. 
To R. D. W. Connor, Esq., 
Raleigh, I^. C. 

My Dear SiR;, 

Within five or six years friends of mine have seen the 
original plaster model [of the Washington] made by 
Canova's own hands, which was still in a good state of 
preservation. It forms, or at least did form within that 
time, a part of the collection of w^orks finished and un- 
finished, models, and relics of Canova, collected and pre- 
served in the house in which the sculptor was born at Pos- 
sagno, not far from Asolo, in the foot hills of the Venetian 
Alps. I venture to suggest that a rej^lica of the statue might 
probably be had by the State of North Carolina, at no very 
great expense, through the friendly intervention of the 
American Ambassador at Rome with the Italian authori- 
ties. * 4f * * * * 

Very faithfully yours, 

Bellamy Storer. 

1 Donaldson's prediction proved well founded. Hughes failed com- 
pletely to perform his contract. 

- L. S. In reply to a letter of inquiry relative to certain engravings 
of the statue in his possession. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 75 

Robert M. Winthrop to R. D. W. Connor' 

American Embassy 
May 10, 1908. 
E. D. W. Connor, Esquire, 

Secretary of the I*Torth Carolina Historical Commis- 
sion, Raleigh, IST. C. 

In reply to yonr letter of the 23rd ultimo, addressed to 
the Ambassador, I beg to inform you as follows : 

The Embassy applied simultaneously to the Consulates 
at Leghorn and at Venice, as well as to the Ministry of 
Eoreign Affairs for the information desired by you relative 
to the plaster cast of the statue of Washing-ton executed by 

The Minister for Foreign Affairs informed the Ambassa- 
dor on April 4th last that the Minister of Public Instruc- 
tion had directed the Commission who has charge of the 
historical monuments in the Province of Venice to find out 
if the cast is in condition to have another cast made from it 
without injury and His Excellency promised to inform the 
Ambassador of the result of this inquiry and further whether 
the Royal Government was prepared to offer to the I^orth 
Carolina Historical Commission this cast as a present. 
]!»J"othing further has been heard from the Ministry of Foreign 

On the other hand, the American Consul at Leghorn has 
informed the Embassy that a careful search of the archives 
of his Consulate fails to discover any correspondence be- 
tween Canova and Thomas Appleton. The Consul however, 
adds as follows : 

''There is a memorandum dated June 1st, 1820, made 
by Consul Appleton in the official records saying that a 
letter (copy?) to the Governor of Xorth Carolina on the 

iL. S. 

76 XoKTH Cakolina Historical Commission. 

subject of the statue of Washington was 'in file of papers 
relating to statue.' 

"There are also in the official records copies of two letters 
from Consul Appleton to the Governor of North Carolina 
regarding the statue ; and several references to the Statue 
in other letters. 

"Should transcripts of these letters be desired, the cost of 
the same would be the fees prescribed for copies, — 50 cents 
for the first 100 words, and 25 cents for every additional 
hundred words or less." 

Furthermore, I beg to transmit copies of a letter from 
the Major of Possagno (Translation) which has been for- 
warded by the Consul at Venice, in which he courteously 
agrees to grant permission for the duplication of the cast, 
together with the Embassy's reply to the Consul. The Em- 
bassy has been awaiting an answer with reference to the 
photos desired of the cast as well as estimates of the cost 
of the copy of the original cast before communicating the 
above information to you. The Consul at Venice has been 
again directed to make renewed efforts to secure this supple- 
mentary information, and as soon as it is received by the 
Embassy, it will be at once transmitted to you. 

I am, 

Very truly yours, 

Robert M. Winthrop 
Second Secretary of Embassy. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 77 

Robert M. Winthrop to James V. Long 


March 13, 1908. 
James Verner Long, Esquire, 
American Consul, 

The Embassy is in receipt of your letters of the 6th and 
7th, the second enclosing a communication addressed to you 
by the Mayor of Possagno, giving permission to have a 
replica made of the cast in question. The Embassy greatly 
appreciates the courteous terms used in granting this per- 
mission, and will transmit a copy of the letter to the Secre- 
tary of the ]^orth Carolina Historical Commission, which 
society will be doubtless pleased to avail itself of the Mayor's 
obliging courtesy. 

With reference to the allusion in the letter to photos of 
the cast and estimates of the cost of a replica, the Embassy 
will be glad if you will point out to the Mayor of Possagno, 
that the previous inquiries he alludes to, were regarded by 
the former Ambassador, Mr. White, as of a purely private 
nature, and the archives of the Embassy contain nothing 
with reference to the matter. 

On the other hand, the Embassy before communicating 
with the above named commission is especially desirous of 
learning the cost of a replica for which the Mayor has given 
his kind permission ; also whether photographs of several 
views of it may be had and at what price. 
I am, 
Your obedient servant, 

(signed) Robert M. Winthrop. 

Second Secretary of Embassy. 

78 I^ORTH CAROLi:srA Historical Commission. 

E. Rossi to James V. Long 



N"o. 151. 
Office of the Mayor. March 5, 1908. 

As a special favor, and making an exception to the rule 
that forbids the reproduction, the Administration of this 
town has decided to permit the copy of the statue of George 
Washington by Canova, of which a very fine original model 
exists in this museum. Such concession has been made with 
a view to paying a tribute of homage to the great man who 
was the first President of the United States, and to increase 
the admiration for the genius of the celebrated artist who 
is a glory to our country. 

The Director of the Museo Canoviano, Professor Sera- 
fini, who studied in the Royal Academy of Pine Arts in 
Venice, would be disposed to take charge of the said copy. 

In the month of August, 1906, the Amtu'ican Ambassador, 
Mr. Henry White, visited the museum in this towm, and he 
also asked for a reproduction of this work. A correspond- 
ence was begun on this subject, and at his request, large 
size photos of George Washington's statue were sent, with a 
preliminary estimate of the expense, but no answer was re- 

This I communicate for your information and as an an- 
swer to your esteemed note. With kind regards, 

The Mayor. 


Canova's Statue of Washington. 79 

Robert M. Winthrop to R. D. W. Connor^ 

American Embassy 
August 22, 1908. 
R. D. W. Connor, Esquire, 

Secretary to the ]S[orth Carolina Historical Commission, 
Raleigh, N. C. 

Referring to the Embassy's communication of May 10, 
last, relative to the plaster cast of the statue of Washington 
executed by Canova, and especially with reference to the 
Embassy's statement as to the probability of the Italian 
Government's desiring to offer the cast as a present, I have 
now the honor to inform you that the Ambassador is in re- 
ceipt of a letter from Signore Tittoni, the Italian Minister 
for Foreign Affairs, in which he states that permission to 
make a reproduction of the cast having been accorded by 
the Municipality of Possagiio, whose property the cast is, 
the Italian Government will take pleasure in having a re- 
production of the cast made, and is desirous of offering it as 
a present to the North Carolina Historical Association [Com- 
mission] . 

The Ambassador has accepted this generous offer on your 
behalf and has hastened to express his best thanks to Signer 
Tittoni, and through him to the Italian Government for 
this most graceful act of courtesy, and he feels that it will 
be most highly appreciated by the State of ITorth Carolina 
as well as by the Historical Commission, of that State. 
I remain. Sir, 

Your obedient servant, 

Robert M. Winthrop 
Second Secretary of Embassy. 

iL. S. 

80 JsToKTH Carolina Histokical Commission. 

John W. Garrett to R. D. W. Connor ' 

American Embassy 

iNTovember 18, 1909. 

R. D. W. Connor, Esquire, 

Secretary, JSTorth Carolina Historical Commission, Ral- 
eigh, N. C. 


With reference to previous correspondence on the subject, 
I have today received a note from, the Foreign Office inform- 
ing me that the copy of Canova's statue of Washington was 
forv\^arded by the Italian Ministry of Public Instruction, 
enclosed in three cases, from Genoa on the steamer "Luisi- 
ana" on the 14th of jSTovember, 1909. 

The three cases were directed to ''The 2^^orth Carolina 
Historical Commission, Raleigh, N. C."" 
I am, Sir, 

Your obedient servant, 

John W. Garrett 

Charge cV Affaires. 

iL. S. 

- The cases were received and the cast was placed, temporarily, in the 
east corridor, on the second floor of the State Capitol, January, 1910. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 81 


The following is a calendar of all the letters and other 
documents in the collections of the ISTorth Carolina Histori- 
cal Commission, relating to Canova's Statue of Washington, 
which are not printed in this bulletin. 

Turner (James). United States Senator. A. L. S. 
Washington, Jan. 6, 181G. To William Miller, Gov. of 
N". C. Promises to make inquiries as to whether the statue 
can be made in the United States. 

Mitchell (Samuel L.) Eminent scientist. A. L. S. New 
York, Jan. 11, 1816. To I^athaniel Macon, United States 
Senator. Recommends Messrs. N'orris and Kain, of New 
York, as competent sculptors to make the statue. 

Norris and Kain, Sculptors. New York. Jan. 11, 1816. 
To Samuel L. Mitchell. Offer to make the statue for $5,000. 
Enclosed in Mitchell's to Macon. 

Williamson (Hugh). Physician and Historian. A. L. S. 
New York. Jan. 16, 1816. To Nathaniel Macon. Thinks 
the statue can be made in New York. Also recommends 
three sculptors in London, etc. 

Patterson (Robert). Director of Mint at Philadelphia. 
A. L. S. Jan. 10, 1816. To William Jones, Secretary of 
Navy. Recommends Valeperta, an Italian sculptor. En- 
closed in Jones's to Macon. P. 20. 

Williamson (Hugh). A. L. S. New York. Jan. 22, 
1816. To Nathaniel Macon. Recommends a New York 
sculptor. Discusses the style and costume, and recommends 


82 N^ORTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

ISTicbolsoii (Joseph H.) Judge. A. L. S. Baltimore, 
Jan. 25, 1816. To Nathaniel Macon. Recommends Vala- 
perta, an Italian sculptor then in Washington. "Valaperta 
worked a long time for the Empress Josephine, in the Palace 
at Malmaison, and comes out with a great Reputation." 

■Miller (William). Gov. of Is^. C. Governor's Letter 
Book, (26) Executive Office, N". C. Raleigh, May 4:th 1816. 
To William Pinkney, IT. S. Minister to Russia. Request- 
ing him to procure the services of Thomas Appleton, Ameri- 
can Consul at Leghorn, to make contract with Canova for 
the statue. Style to be Roman, price $10,000. 

Miller (William). Governor's Letter Book, (29). Exe- 
cutive Office N. C. Raleigh, May 9, 1816. To Jamtes Mon- 
roe, Secretary of State. Requesting a letter to Appleton, 

King (William R). Secretary to the American Embassy 
to Russia. A. L. S. Baltimore, May 16, 1816. To Gov. 
Miller. Will make arrangements in Baltimore with Apple- 
ton's nephews for transmitting remittances to Appleton, etc. 

King (William R.) A. L. S. Baltimore, May 18, 1816. 
To Gov. Miller. Has made arrangements for transmitting 
remittances, etc. 

Miller (William). Governor's Letter Book, (37). Peters- 
burg, Va. May 26, 1816. To William R. King. "Upon 
reflection I have thought it best to postpone the purchase of 
a statue of Genl Washing-ton," etc. ISTote in Letter Book: 
"Never received by Mr. King." 

Monroe (James). Secretary of State. Copy. Depart- 
ment of State, May 27, 1816. To Thomas Appleton. 
". . . it will be very satisfactory to the President that you 
should afford him [Mr. King] all the aid in your power" 
[in making a contract with Canova]. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 83 

Pinkney (William). U. S. Minister to Russia. A. L. S. 
Xaples, Aug. 1, 1816. To Gov. Miller, ". . . it will give 
me sincere Pleasure to be of use in the very interesting 
Subject of youir Letter," etc. 

King (William R.) A. L. S. Florence, Sept. 29, 1816. 
To Gov. Miller, Appleton has agreed to superintend the 
statue, and ''Canova, certainly the first Artist in the world, 
has agTeed to undertake it's execution." 

Resolution of the General Assembly of E'orth Carolina. 
Dec. 11, 1816. Requests information from the Governor 
of steps taken to secure the statue. 

Miller (William). Gov. of !N". C. Governor's Letter 
Book. (138). Executive Office. N". C. Raleigh, Dec. 12, 

1816. To the General Assembly of iN'orth Carolina. Giving 
account of his course in making contract for statue, etc. 

Resolution of the General Assem;bly of ISTorth Carolina. 
Dec. 28, 1816. Api>roving the Governor's action etc. 

Miller (William). Governor's Letter Book (223). 
Petersburg, Ya., Feb. 1, 1817. To N". & C. Appleton. Re- 
questing the purchase of two bills on Amsterdam or Paris 
of $3,500 each, etc. 

Dall and Company (William). L. S. Baltimore. Feb. 4, 

1817. To Gov. Miller. Have succeeded to business of N. 
& C. Appleton, and purchased the bills as requested, etc. 

Dall and Company (William). L. S. Baltimore March 
6, 1817. To Gov. Miller. Requesting remittance for bills, 
etc. Enclosing copy of letter to Daniel Cromelin and Sons 
instructing them to place 17,500 guilders to credit of Gov. 

Miller (William). Governor's Letter Book. (257). Exe- 
cutive Office K C. Raleigh. March 19. 1817. To William 
Dall & Co. Enclosing letter to Thomas Appleton. 

84 North Carolina Historical Commission. 

Miller (William). Governor's Letter Book, (256). Exe- 
cutive Office N. C. Raleigh. March 19, 1817. To Daniel 
Cromelin and Sons. Draft for 17,500 guilders in favor of 
Thomias Appleton. 

Appleton & Dall. L. S. Baltimore, May 13, 1817. To 
Gov. Miller. Letters to Apjileton have been sent to the care 
of John Quincy Adams at London. 

Miller (William). Governor's Letter Book. (307.) Exec- 
utive Office N. C. Raleigh. May 17, 1817. To Brig. Genl. 
Joseph G. Swift. Cerrachi's bust and Trumbull's portrait 
of Washington to be used by Canova as models, etc. 

Appleton & Dall. L. S. Baltimore. July 14, 1817. To 
Gov. Miller. Daniel Cromelin & Sons have acknowledged 
receipt of bills, etc. 

Appleton (Thomas). A. L. S. Leghorn, Jan. 21, 1819. 
To Gov. Miller. Has drawn on him for $4,34G. Statue 
fast progressing, etc. 

Branch (John). Gov. of 'N. C. Governor's Letter Book 
(156). Raleigh, April 6, 1819. To Ex-Gov. Miller. Itai- 
portuned daily to accept Appleton's draft for $4000 ; Miller's 
warrant book shows that money had been sent ; wishes further 
information, etc. 

Miller (William). A. L. S. Louisburg, April 7, 1819. 
To Gov. Branch. A few days before leaving office drew a 
warrant for $3160, to remit to Appleton ; entrusted money to 
Thos. H. Brown, of Baltimore, to be delivered to Appleton 
& Dall ; fears the mioney has been lost ; offers to make it 
good to the State. 

Plummer (William). Private Secretary to the Governor. 
Governor's Letter Book (157). To William Dall & Co. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 85 

Requesting whether Gov. Miller's agent delivered the money, 

Dall (William). A. L. S. Baltimore. April 12, 1819. To 
William Pliitmmer. Giving details of transactions with Gov. 
Miller; has not received the $3160 entrusted to Thos. H. 

Plummer (William). Governor's Letter Book, (156). 
Ealeigh. May 8, 1819. To Ex-Gov. Miller. Governor does 
not wish him to act with precipitation, or to sacrifice any 
property; will make inquiries about Brown, etc. 

Thompson (Smith). Secretary of the ISTavy. L. S. Navy 
Department. Jan. 27, 1820. To Nathaniel Macon & Mont- 
ford Stokes, U. S. Senators. Commodore Bainbridge, com- 
manding the U. S. Mediterranean Squadron, has been in- 
structed to arrange for bringing the Statue to the U. S. in 
a war vessel. 

Macon (Nathaniel) and Stokes (Montford). L. S. Wash- 
gton. Jan. 31. 1820. To Gov. Branch, 
above letter from the Secretary of the Navy. 

ington. Jan. 31. 1820. To Gov. Branch. Enclosing the 

Branch (John). Governor's Letter Book (278). Exec- 
utive Office, No. Ca. Raleigh. Feb. 15, 1820. To Thomas 
Appleton. Commodore Bainbridge will transport the Statue 
to the U. S. 

Bainbridge (William) Commodore LT. S. N. L. S. U. S. 
Ship Columbus, Leghorn Roads, July 1, 1820. To Gov. 
Branch. Statue not ready in time to go by U. S. Frigate 

Appleton, (Thomas). A. L. S. Leghorn. March 30, 
1821. To Gov. Branch. Statue shipped by IT. S. Ship, 

86 ISToRTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

Franklin (Jesse). Governor of North Carolina. Gov- 
ernor's Letter Book (27). Executive Office No. Carolina. 
Raleigh. April 4, 1821. To the Secretary of the Navy. 
Requests advices as to whether the statue will be shipped 
by U. S. Ship. 

Thompson (Smith). Secretary of the Navy. L. S. Navy 
Department. April 17. 1821. To Gov. Franklin. Repeats 
assurance that statue will be shipped by U. S. Ship. 

Franklin (Jesse) Governor's Letter Book (70). Exec- 
utive Office. No. Carolina. Raleigh. July [31] 1821. To 
Commodore Bainbridge. Acknowledges letter informing 
him that statue had arrived at Boston on the Columbus. 
Requests information relative to shipping to North Carolina. 

Franklin (Jesse) Governor's Letter Book (74). Execu- 
tive Office. No. Carolina. Raleigh July 31, 1821. To 
Thomas Appleton. Statue in Boston. "Grateful acknowl- 
edgements" for his "jDarticular attention" to the business. 

Bainbridge (William). A. L. S. Boston, Aug. 12, 1821. 
To Gov. Franklin. Is making inquiries relative to shipping 
the statue by coasting vessel to Wilmington. 

Franklin (Jesse). Governor's Letter Book (81). Exec- 
utive Office No. Carolina. Raleigh. Sept. 10, 1821. To 
Commodore Bainbridge. Accepting his oifer to superintend 
shipment of the statue to Wilmington. 

Bainbridge (William). L. S. Boston. Sept. 18, 1821. 
To Gov. Franklin. Enclosing copy of letter from. A. Bin- 
ney. Enclosure : Amos Binney, U. S. Navy Agent. Boston. 
Sept. 18, 1821. To Commodore Bainbridge. The statue 
''cannot he placed under dech of any vessel employed in the 
coasting trade;" suhmitting propositions for its transporta- 
tion to Wilmington or Norfolk. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 87 

Franklin (Jesse). Governor's Letter Book (117). Exec- 
utive Office 'No. Carolina. Ealeigh. Sept. 28, 1821. To 
Commodore Bainbridge, leaving manner of shipment to his 

Bainbridge (William). L. S. Boston. Nov. 3, 1821. 
To Gov. Franklin. Statue ''was shipped on board the 
Schooner, Mary Ann, Stephen Skiff, Master, which vessel 
sailed on the 26th bound to Wilmington, N. C." 

Thaxter (Benj. L.) D. S. for Stephen Skiff, Wilming- 
ton, Nov. 22, 1821. Receipt for freight on statue from 
Boston to Wilmington. 

Franklin (Jesse). Governor's Letter Book (142). Exec- 
utive Office No. Carolina, Raleigh. Nov. 10, 1821. To 
James Owen, Collector of the Port of Wilmington, request- 
ing him to take charge of the statue upon its arrival at 
Wilmington, in case of the absence of John Hogg, to whom 
it was consigned. 

Hogg (John). A. L. S. Wilmington, N. C. Nov. 12, 
1821. To Gov. Franklin, notifying him of the arrival of 
the statue at Wilmington. 

Franklin (Jesse). Governor's Letter Book (144). Exec- 
utive Office, No. Carolina. Raleigh. Nov. 15, 1821. To 
John Hogg, requesting him to make contract for transport- 
ing statue up the Cape Fear to Fayetteville. 

Franklin (Jesse). Governor's Letter Book (146). Exec- 
utive Office No. Carolina. Raleigh Nov. 18, 1821. To 
James Owen, requesting that no contract for transportation 
of statue to Fayetteville be made. 

Bainbridge (William). A. L. S. Boston. Nov. 20, 
1821. To Gov. Franklin, enclosing bill of lading etc. Efi- 
closure: Shiff (Stephen) Master of the Mary A^iJi. D. 8. 

88 I^OKTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

Bill of lading for Statue of WasJiingtoH: Binney (Amos) 
Account of expenses incurred in shipment to Wilmington. 

Franklin (Jesse). Governor's Letter Book (159). Exec- 
utive Office 1^0. Carolina. Ealeigh. Nov. 25, 1821. To 
William Nichols, State Architect, instructing him to go to 
Wilmington to superintend the transportation of the Statue 
to Raleigh. 

Nichols (William). State Architect. A. L. S. Raleigh. 
Nov. 26, 1821. To Gov. Franklin. Will go to Wilmington 
tomorrow etc. 

Franklin (Jesse). Governor's Letter Book (160). Exec- 
utive Office, No. Carolina. Raleigh. Nov. 26, 1821. To 
the General Assembly. Encloses vouchers etc. from Thomas 
Appleton, recommends compensation to Appleton, etc. 

Franklin (Jesse). Governor's Letter Book (166). Exec- 
utive Office. No. Carolina. Raleigh. Nov. 28, 1821. To 
Commodore Bainbridge, informing him of safe arrival of 
Statue at Wilmington. 

Raleigh Register, The, Friday, Dec. 28, 1821. Account 
of the unveiling of the Statue in the State House. 

Appleton (Thomas). A. L. S. Leghorn, July 1, 1822. 
To Gov. Branch, complaining of not receiving any reply to 
his letter of April 18, 1821 ; requests information as to 
arrival of the statue, etc. etc. 

Holmes, (Gabriel). Gov. of N. C. Governor's Letter 
Book (106). Executive Office, No. Ca. Raleigh, March 
4, 1823. To Thomas Appleton, giving reasons for delay 
in replying to his letter of April 18, 1821 ; for failure of 
Legislature to vote a compensation for his services ; his serv- 
ices deeply appreciated, and will undoubtedly be rewarded 
by the next Legislature. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 89 

Appleton (Tliomas). Extract of letter to Thomas Jeffer- 
son, enclosed in Jefferson's to Gov. Holmes, Aug. 3, 1823. 
Gives history of the Statue and complains of the failure 
of the Legislature to give credit for his services or compensa- 
tion for his trouble and use of C'errachi's bust. 

Holmes (Gabriel). Governor's Letter Book (110). Exec- 
utive Department. Raleigh. Oct. 6, 1823. To Thomas 
Jefferson. Gives history of the failure to compensate 

Devereux (T. P.) Governor's Private Secretary. Gov- 
ernor's Letter Book (205). Raleigh. April 7, 1824. To 
Robert Lenox. Request to remit to Thomas Appleton the 
sum of $500. 

Lenox (Robert). A. L. S. N"ew York. April 16, 1824. 
To Gov. Holmes. Will make the remittance to Appleton 
"with gr'eat satisfaction." 

Devereux (Thomas). A. L. S. Raleigh, July 6, 1831. 
To Montford Stokes, Gov. of JST. C. Enclosing letter from 
Ball Hughes. (P. 57.) "It is almost useless to add that 
I never before heard of Mr. Hughes & that your Excellency 
has all the knowledge upon the subject which I possess." 

Stokes (Montford). Gov. of X. C. Governor's Letter 
Book. ¥ov. 22, 1831. To the General Assembly. Extract. 
Destruction of Canova's Statue of Washington. 

Wainwright (Jonathan M.) A. L. S. ^N'ew York. N"ov. 
25, 1821. To Gov. Stokes. Introduces Ball Hughes as "an 
artist of great & acknowledged merit in the department of 

Trumbull (John). A. L. S. Is^ew York. N'ov. 27, 1831. 
To Gov. Stokes. Recommiends Ball Hughes as competent 

90 iSToRTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

to restore the Statue of Washington ; account of his restora- 
tion of the Statue of Earl of Chatham in ]^ew York. 

Livingston (Edward). A. L. S. Washington, ISTov. 30, 
1831. To Gov. Stokes. Introduces R. B. Hughes as "a. 
gentleman of very great merit as a sculptor." 

Hughes, (Ball) A. L. S. Raleigh. Dec. 7. 1831. To 
Gov. Stokes. The following enclosures : 

Van Buren (Martin) . President. A. L. S. Washing- 
ton. June 3, 1829. To Gen. Van Resselaer. Introduces 
Ball Hughes "of the British Academy and justly disthir 
guished for his talents as a sculptor." 

Will-es (Charles). A. L. 8. N&w York. Nov. 25, 1831. 
To Ball Hughes. Testimonial of the "very general appro- 
bation'' of his ivorh in New Yorh, particularly of his model 
for a statue of Alexander Hatnilton, of Bishop Hohart, and 
his restoration of the statue of the Earl of Chatham. 

Hone (Philip). A. L. 8. New York. Nov. 25, 1831. 
To Andrew 8tevenson. Introducing Hughes as "a sculptor 
of high reputation" ivhose works in New York "promise to 
he superior to any tiling which has been executed in our 

Hone (Philip). A. D. 8. Neic- York. Nov. 25, 1831. 
Testimonial of Ball Hughes' "superior talents as a sculptor" 
as shoivn by his work in New York. 

Browne (Walter). Mayor of New York. D. 8. New 
York. Nov. 26, 1831. Testimonial of Ball Hughes' char- 
acter and ability. 

Wilkes (Charles), and Others. D. 8. New York. Dec. 
27, 1830. Testimonial of the excellence of Hughes' model 
of Hamilton. 

Canova's Statue of Washington. 91 

Stokes (Montford). A. L. S. Executive Office. Novem- 
ber [December] 8, 1831. To the General xlssembly trans- 
mitting a coanmimication from Hughes, Dec. 7, 1831, -vvith 
his endorsements. "^'In the present peculiar state of public 
feeling, I do not feel myself at liberty to recommend any 
particular course proper to be pursued on this occasion." 

Stokes (Montford). Governor's Letter Book. Executive 
Office. Ealeigh, X. C. Feb. 20, 1832. To Ball Hughes, en- 
closing draft for $500 ; "It will readily occur to you that in 
order to accommodate you and forward the undertaking, 
1 am departing from the usual customi, by making an advance 
of money previous to making the contract." 

Hughes (Ball). A. L. S. New York. Feb. 27, 1832. 
To Gov. Stokes. Acknowledges receipt of an advance of 
$500 ; will begin his work on the Statue ''the moment the 
weather settles a little." 

Hughes (Ball). A. L. [New York] April 25, [1832]. 
To Gov. Stokes. In a fortnight will be on the road to 
Kaleigh ; ''has been detained in New York owing to Mrs. 
Hughes' confinement." 

Hughes (Robert Ball). A. L. S. Raleigh City. May 
28, 1832. To Gov. Stokes. Encloses form of a contract. 
"I have now commenced the work, have been engaged on it 
nearly three days, in fact I have moulded most of the frag- 
ments." Requests the payment of another $500. 

Stokes (Montford) and Hughes (Robert Ball). D. S. 
[Raleigh]. May 29, 1832. Contract for the restoration of 
the statue of Washington by Hughes for the sum of $5000. 
William R. Hill, Witness. 

Hughes (Robert Ball). A. L. S. Raleigh City. June 
30, 1832. To Gov. Stokes. Castings of the head, limbs, 
body and fragments have been produced "in a most success- 

92 K'oRTH Carolixa Historical Commission. 

fill and perfect manner. In consequence of the dreadful 
cholera having visited this happy countrv, I am anxious be- 
vond measure that niv wife should be here with me. . . . 
[now] waiting for me in Philadelphia. ... I intend or 
hope to leave here for that place by the mail of tomorrow." 
Request for payment of $800. 

Hughes (Ball). A. L. S. Xew York. [Sept.] 17 
[1832]. To Gov. Stokes. "You will doubtless attribute 
my non arrival in your city to the dreadful sickness with 
which we have been visited. Indeed it is impossible to 
describe the state of alarm and confusion which it has caused 
to all classes of society," etc. 

Waugh (Alfred S.) Assistant to Ball Hughes. A. L. S. 
Raleigh. Sept. 26, 1832. To Gov. Stokes. His "very 
peculiar situation," owing to Hughes's absence, "universal 
displeasure of the citizens of the State at his absence from 
his work," "his threats of a prosecution by law, if I do not 
forward the casts of the Statue now made, to him the said 
R. B. Hughes in the city of iSTew York," requests Governor's 
advice '*as to the line of conduct I must pursue," etc. 

Stokes (Montford). Governor's Letter Book. Executive 
Office, Raleigh. Sept. 20, 1832. To Alfred S. Waugh. 
"I would advise you not to send the casts to Xew York; nor 
will their removal be permitted." 

Hughes (Ball). A. L. S. [Xew York]. Oct. 2, 1832. 
To Gov. Stokes. Complains of unfaithfulness of Waugh, 
his refusal to obey instructions, etc. The cholera in [N^ew 
York has "put an end to my thinking of returning to 

Hughes (Ball). A. L. S. Xew York. Oct. 10, 1832. 
To Gov. Stokes. Xecessary to have the casts sent to Xew 
York. "My going to Raleigh at the present time would not 
forward but retard the work. ... I entreat vour Excel- 

CajS'ova's Statue or Washington. 93 

lency to have the Casts and moulds forwarded with all 
possible speed. Do not have a moment's anxiety respecting 
the work." Feels "too much pride and honor" etc. "to 
deceive or disappoint the hopes" etc. 

Hughes (Robert Ball). A. L. S. [Xew York], Nov. 
1, 1832. To Gov. Stokes. IndigTiant at charge in the 
Greensborough Patriot that he had "run awav," etc. a 
"slanderous libel," "an infamous lie," etc. " 'Tis true I 
have received 2,800 dollars," etc., but no more than entitled 
to by contract etc. 

Stokes (Montford). A. L. S. Raleigh. Xov. 6, 1832. 
To Robert Ball Hughes. Editor of the Greensborough 
Patriot "a reckless fault finder, and has abused me worse 
than he has you." Understanding that the work was to be 
done in Raleigh. Xo objection to removal of the casts "but 
you can not expect me to superintend their transportation 
to a seaport," etc. Fears Legislature may rescind appro- 
priation if you do not "shew a disposition to go on with the 
work" ; earnestly recommends "that you come on as soon as 
convenient" etc. 

Hughes (Robert Ball). A. L. S. New York. Dec. 29, 
1832. To Daniel TV. Courts and Benjamin Sumner, Com- 
mittee of the Legislature. A defence of his course in regard 
to the Statue. 

Swain (David L.) Gov. of X. C. Governor's Letter 
Book (23-27). Executive Department. Raleigh. Jan. 
23, 1833. To Robert Ball Hughes. Has been authorized 
by the Legislature to take such steps relative to Hughes' con- 
tract as he deems wise. Reviews the controversy, and urges 
Hughes to take immediate steps to execute his contract. 

Hughes (Ball). A. L. S. Xew York. Feb. .5, 1833. 
To Gov. Swain. Enclosing Gov. Stokes' letter authorizing 
removal of the casts. 

94 l^ORTH Carolina Historical Commission. 

Swain (David L.) Governor's Letter Book. Executive 
Department. Raleigh. Feb. 12, 1833. To Robert Ball 
Hughes. "The casts will be delivered to any agent you may 
designate to receive them," 

Swain (David L.) Governor's Letter Book. Executive 
Department. Raleigh. March 25, 1833. To Robert Ball 
Hughes. Requests an answer to his letter of Feb. 12. "You 
will j)erceive the propriety and necessity of advising me at 
once of the course which you may determine tO' pursue in 
relation to your contract with the state." 

Swain (David L.) Governor's Letter Book. Executive 
Department. Raleigh. March 25, 1833. To James Don- 
aldson. Requests him to deliver the above letter to Hughes. 

Donaldson (James). Governor's Letter Book (60). 
I^ew York. April 8, 1833. To Gov. Swain. Letter to 
Hughes delivered on the 4th inst. 

Hughes (Robert Ball). A. L. S. N'ew York. [April 
19, 1832]. To Gov. Swain. Will have casts removed at 
once, and m\ake "utmost exertions to complete the said work" 

Gales (Weston R.) Governor's Letter Book. Raleigh. 
May 30, 1833. To Gov. Swain. Enclosing letter from 
Hughes. Enclosure: Hughes (Ball) Governor's Letter 
Booh (73). New York. May 21, 1883. To Weston R. 
Gales. Requests his superintendence of the removal of the 
casts, & gives directions for paching etc. 

Swain (David L.) Governor's Letter Book (119). Exec- 
utive Department. Raleigh. Oct. 8, 1833. To R. B. 
Hughes. A request for a report on his wOrk. 

Hughes (Ball). A. L. S. [New York] Oct. 14 [1833]. 
To Gov. Swain. "In about three weeks from the present 

Canova's Statue of Washi^stgton. 95 

time, I expect to be at work on the Statue, and shall not 
leave it for any other order, until it is finished and safe in 
your State house at Raleigh." 

Donaldson (Eobert). A. L. S. I^^e\v York. Oct. 15, 
1833. To Gov. Swain. ''Hughes has several other things 
on hand and I fear that it may be some time before he com- 
pletes his contract." 

Swain (David L.) Governor's Letter Book (122). Ra- 
leigh. ISTov. 8, 1833. To Judge William Gaston. Invests 
him with full authority, while in ISTew York, to investigate 
work of Hughes. "If he satisfies you that he can and will 
jDerform his contract, urge him by every consideration, con- 
nected with his reputation, to its immediate execution. If 
on the contrary you come to the conclusion, that he is want- 
ing either in ability or disposition, I would thank you to 
suggest to me the best means of obtaining redress." 

Swain (David L.) Governor's Letter Book (180). Ex- 
ecutive Department. Raleigh. ]\larch 5, 1834. To Robert 
Ball Hughes. Introduces H. I. Cannon who will call "to 
ascertain and report to me the state of your operations upon 
the Statue of Washington." 

Hughes (Ball). A. L. S. [A^ewYork]. April 3, [1834]. 
To Gov. Swain. "I will now put the entire strength of my 
study on that Work [the statue], and will have it ready for 
the State House sometime in September" ; cannot go to 
Raleigh till August. 

Swain (David L.) Governor's Letter Book (219), Ex- 
ecutive Department. Raleigh. June 17, 1834. To Louis 
D. Henry. Appoints him agent, while in l^ew York, to ex- 
amine state of Hughes' work, etc. 

Swain (David L.) Governor's Letter Book (238). Ex- 
ecutive Department. Raleigh. August 22, 1834. To Rob- 

96 North Caeolina Historical Commission. 

ert Donaldson. Encloses letter for Hughes, "probably for 
the last time." Enclosure: Swain (David L.) Governor's 
Letter Booh {237). Executive Department. Raleigh. Au- 
gust 20, 183Jf-. To Robert Ball Hughes. "I have been much 
disappointed in receiving no intelligence from you on the 
subject" [of tlie statue~\. 

Swain (David L.) Governor's Letter Book. Executive 
Department. Dec. 10, 1834. To the General Assembly. 
Encloses documents bearing on controversy with Hughes. ''I 
consider it only necessary to refer to these papers as afford- 
ing conclusive evidence that Mr. Hughes possesses the requi- 
site skill to enable him to fulfill his engageiment, but that he 
is, unfortunately for the interests of the State, and his own 
reputation, entirely beyond the influence of either legal or 
moral coercion." 

Hughes (Ball). Governor's Letter Book (315). [New 
York]. Jan. 15, 1835. To Gov. Swain. "My Statue of 
Hamilton is finished. * * * Eor the next six months I will 
devote myself to your work," etc., etc. 

Everett (Edward). A. L. S. Charlestou, Mass. Nov. 
21, 1835. To William Gaston. Recommends Mr. L. Per- 
sico, "an Italian sculptor of merit," either to restore Canova's 
Washington, or to replace it with one of his own execution. 

Hughes (Ball). A. L. S. New York. Aug. 16 [1837 ?]. 
To Edward B. Dudley, Gov. of N. C. Will proceed with 
his work on the Statue, and devote his "entire time" to it, if 
the Governor Avill advance another $500. 

Grahami (William A.). Gov. of N. C. Governor's Let- 
ter Book. Executive Office. May 24, 1848. To A. H. 
Shepperd, giving a history of Canova's Statue of Washington. 


I mill mil Hill Hill mil mil mil mil Hill ii mil 

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