Anne Whitney

Anne Whitney

Portrait of Anne Whitney
Born (1821-09-02)September 2, 1821
Watertown, Massachusetts
Died January 23, 1915(1915-01-23) (aged 93)
Boston, Massachusetts
Nationality American
Known for Sculptor, poetry

Anne Whitney (September 2, 1821 in Watertown, Massachusetts – January 23, 1915 in Boston, Massachusetts) was an American sculptor and poet.

Early years

As with many other early, successful 19th century women sculptors, Whitney came from a supportive and liberal – in her case, Unitarian – family background. She was homeschooled and later traveled to Europe, where she studied in Rome, Munich, and Paris before she returning to the US. In 1846 she opened a small school in Salem, Massachusetts.

Statue of Charles Sumner in Harvard Square sculpted by Whitney
Bronze medallion of Jennie McGraw Fiske (1891)

In the 1860s she exhibited work in the Boston gallery of De Vries, Ibarra & Co.[1] A well-known supporter of both the abolitionist and suffragette movements, Whitney felt the brunt of sexism when in 1875, she won the commission for a statue of Charles Sumner but was denied it because she was a woman.[2]


Whitney and her companion, Addy Manning, lived abroad in the 1860s and 1870s, in Rome, Florence, and Paris. Associated with a group of female artists Henry James described as the "white, marmorean flock", Whitney's life abroad is well documented by more than 400 letters she sent to her family,[3] now among more than 4,000 letters, photographs, and other documentation in the Anne Whitney Archive at Wellesley College.[4] Among her well-known public monuments is the statue of Samuel Adams (1876) in the National Statuary Hall Collection in the US Capitol, Washington D.C.; another is the statue of Leif Ericson (1887) in Boston, another edition of which was placed in Juneau Park, Milwaukee, Wisconsin that year.

She was an accomplished portraitist, completing statues and busts of such famous individuals as John Keats, Samuel Adams, Toussaint l'Ouverture, William Lloyd Garrison, Charles Sumner, the suffragist Frances Willard, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Samuel Sewall, Alice Freeman Palmer, Robert Gould Shaw, Eben Norton Horsford, Harriet Martineau, Jennie McGraw Fiske, and Lucy Stone.

Other of her works can be found in the collections of the Smithsonian Institution, Amherst College, Cornell University, Dallas Museum of Art, Harvard University, Smith College, Wellesley College, the Women's Christian Temperance Union, Newark Museum, Harriet Beecher Stowe Center,[5] Mark Twain Memorial, and the Boston Public Library.

Jacqueline Marie Musacchio's article "Mapping the 'White Marmorean Flock': Anne Whitney Abroad, 1866–1867" uses Whitney's extensive correspondence to create a timeline and associated maps of two trips Whitney made in Europe during this period.[6]


123 works by Anne Whitney are listed in the Art Inventories Catalog hosted by the Smithsonian American Art Museum.[7] These include:

Image gallery


Wikimedia Commons has media related to Anne Whitney.
Wikisource has original works written by or about:
Anne Whitney


  1. Ladies' Repository: a Universalist Monthly Magazine (Boston: Universalist Publishing House, no.37 Cornhill), April 1867
  2. "Back Bay East". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  3. "Introduction, Anne Whitney Abroad, 1867–68". Retrieved 2015-07-26.
  4. "Primary Sources, Anne Whitney Abroad, 1867–1868". Retrieved 2015-07-26.
  5. "Welcome to the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center". Retrieved 1 January 2015.
  6. "Anne Whitney Abroad, 1867–68". Retrieved 2015-07-25.
  7. "SIRIS – Smithsonian Institution Research Information System". Retrieved 2015-07-26.
  8. Whitney, Anne. Abby Adeline Manning (1836–1906).
  9. "Artworks Search Results / American Art". Retrieved 2015-07-26.
  10. Whitney, Anne (1861-01-01). Lady Godiva.
  11. Whitney, Anne (1876-01-01). Samuel Adams.
  12. Whitney, Anne (1878-01-01). William Lloyd Garrison (1805–1879).
  13. Parsons, Kermit C (1968-01-01). "The Great Library". The Cornell campus: a history of its planning and development. Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press. pp. 169–170.
  14. Whitney, Anne (1892-01-01). Harriet Beecher Stowe.

External links

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