Skip to main content

Bushrod Washington

Bushrod Washington
Chester Harding, 1 Sep 1792 - 10 Apr 1866
Bushrod Washington, 5 Jun 1762 - 26 Nov 1829
Oil on canvas
Stretcher: 76.7 × 64.3 × 3.5 cm (30 3/16 × 25 5/16 × 1 3/8")
Frame: 102.9 × 90.5 × 6.4cm (40 1/2 × 35 5/8 × 2 1/2")
Credit Line
National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution; gift of the Washington family, with thanks to the many Washingtons who valued this painting and preserved it for nearly two centuries
Restrictions & Rights
Object number
Exhibition Label
Born Westmoreland County, Virginia
Born into a prominent Tidewater, Virginia, family, Bushrod Washington (a nephew of President George Washington) studied law and graduated from the College of William and Mary in 1778. He was in private practice until President John Adams appointed him to the Supreme Court in 1801. There, he allied himself with John Marshall and Joseph Story to compose a Federalist bloc advocating for American nationalism and a strong federal government. Their efforts shaped the judicial system and set precedents for the legal relationships between the federal government and the states. Washington served on the Supreme Court until his death.
Between 1828 and 1830, the artist Chester Harding painted numerous portraits of political figures in and around Washington, D.C., including portraits of all of the Supreme Court justices. While several of Harding’s portraits have been lost, this life portrait descended in the family of his namesake.
Nacido en el Condado de Westmoreland, Virginia
Miembro de una prominente familia de Tidewater, Virginia, Bushrod Washington (sobrino del presidente George Washington) estudió derecho y se graduó del College of William and Mary en 1778. Ejerció como abogado hasta que el presidente John Adams lo nombró juez del Tribunal Supremo en 1801. Allí hizo alianza con John Marshall y Joseph Story, formando un bloque federalista que promovía el nacionalismo y un gobierno federal fuerte. Sus gestiones moldearon el sistema judicial y sentaron precedentes para las relaciones legales entre el gobierno federal y los estados. Washington fue miembro del Tribunal Supremo hasta su muerte.
Entre 1828 y 1830, el artista Chester Harding pintó numerosos retratos de personajes políticos en Washington, D.C., y sus alrededores, entre ellos todos los jueces del Tribunal Supremo. Aunque varios de los retratos hechos por Harding han desaparecido, este en particular, pintado del natural, permaneció en su familia hasta.
Descended in the family of the subject; gift to NPG in 2017
Data Source
National Portrait Gallery
See more items in
National Portrait Gallery Collection
United States\District of Columbia\Washington