Skip to main content

As a public health precaution, all Smithsonian museums and the National Zoo will temporarily close to the public starting Saturday, March 14 until further notice. Please continue to check back frequently at or for updates. In the meantime, please explore our website, resource materials and online exhibitions. 

Samuel Blodget

Samuel Blodget
Usage Conditions Apply
John Trumbull, 6 Jun 1756 - 10 Nov 1843
Samuel Blodget, Jr., 28 Aug 1757 - 11 Apr 1814
c. 1784
Oil on canvas
Stretcher: 91.8 x 71.1cm (36 1/8 x 28")
Frame: 110.5 x 90.2 x 5.1cm (43 1/2 x 35 1/2 x 2")
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution
Restrictions & Rights
Object number
Exhibition Label
Born in Goffstown, New Hampshire
In many ways Samuel Blodget symbolized the new, protean American: at different times he was a merchant, economist, entrepreneur, and amateur architect. Blodget served in the New Hampshire militia during the American Revolution and then became a merchant in Boston. In 1789 he relocated to Philadelphia and founded the Insurance Company of North America. Later, moving to the nation’s new capital in Washington, he successfully lobbied for the position of superintendent of buildings, despite George Washington’s reservations. He also founded the city’s first bank. Blodget’s only successful architectural design was the Bank of the United States (1795) in Philadelphia, which still stands. He wrote Economica: A Statistical Manual for the United States, considered the first American book on economics. In 1802 he was placed in debtor’s prison, and died insolvent in a Baltimore hospital. John Trumbull painted Blodget, posed in an elegant morning gown, when both men were in London.
The subject; by family descent to I. Harding Hughes, Jr.; donated to St. Andrews School
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
See more items in
National Portrait Gallery Collection