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Portrait of Mary Merrill Thompson, ca. 1850

Contributed by Maine Historical Society

Portrait of Mary Merrill Thompson, ca. 1850

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Mary Merrill Thompson was one of 12 children born to Theophilus and Eleanor Thompson of Freeport.

In 1851, she married John Abbott Rolfe in the parlor of the Brooklyn, New York, home of Henry Ward Beecher. Beecher, a nationally-known orator, was the brother of novelist Harriet Beecher Stowe.

This may be Mary's wedding portrait.

Apparently "Great Aunt Mary" was a formidable woman. Coming face-to-face with a bear in the woods while holding her newborn child, family legend holds that "the bear took one look at Mary and scampered away into the forest."

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Other Information

  • Title: Portrait of Mary Merrill Thompson, ca. 1850
  • Creation Date: circa 1860
  • Subject Date: circa 1850
  • Town: Brooklyn, Freeport
  • County: Cumberland, Kings
  • State: ME, NY
  • Media: Oil on panel
  • Dimensions (cm): 100 x 81 x 7
  • Local Code: 2003.175
  • Object Type: Image

For more information about this item, contact:

Maine Historical Society
489 Congress Street, Portland, ME 04101
(207) 774-1822

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