Captain Harry Kingsbury, York, ca. 1830


The subject of the painting is thought to be Captain Henry "Harry" Kingsbury (1805-1861) of York, son of Joseph and Sarah (Dearborn) Kingsbury. In 1834, Captain Kingsbury married his first wife, Ann S. Trefethen (ca. 1803-1836), of New Castle, New Hampshire. They had one son, Henry Kingsbury, who died eight months before his mother. In 1840, Captain Kingsbury married a second time to Hannah Harmon Grow (1809-1906) of York, the daughter of Captain Timothy and Olive (Harmon) Lindsay Grow. They also had a son who died young, Harry Kingsbury.

Kingsbury's childhood home is now an historic home located on Route 1A (though moved down the street from its original location). Henry, Hannah, their son and Hannah's family are buried behind First Parish Church. He was known to be an acquaintance of Sam Blunt. Note the telescope in his left hand, suggesting his connection to the maritime trade.

The artist is believed to be John Samuel "Sam" Blunt (1798-1835), originally of Portsmouth, New Hampshire. During the first few decades of the 17th century Blunt trained and traveled around the New Hampshire area painting portraits, signs and marine art, before eventually settling in Boston and opening an instructional school there, while continuing to solicit patrons. His work is rarely signed.

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