16.1 Halley 1

This is a monochrome print of Audubon’s only known self portrait in oils (12.5″ X 10″ oil on canvas). The original is in the Patricia Rinehart Barratt-Brown Collection, in New York. The late historian John F. McDermott pointed out that this portrait, purportedly painted by Audubon in 1821 as per his journal, was executed with greater skill and technique than two portraits of his sons that were produced the same year. In 1824, Audubon gave the portrait to Reuben Haines, “… on condition that he should have it copied …”, so there is reason to suspect that the portrait pictured above is the copy, and the original painting has been lost or destroyed. Courtesy of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University (ANSP Archive Collection 457).


Welcome to Commonplace, a destination for exploring and exchanging ideas about early American history and culture. A bit less formal than a scholarly journal, a bit more scholarly than a popular magazine, Commonplace speaks—and listens—to scholars, museum curators, teachers, hobbyists, and just about anyone interested in American history before 1900. It is for all sorts of people to read about all sorts of things relating to early American life—from architecture to literature, from politics to parlor manners. It’s a place to find insightful analysis of early American history as it is discussed in scholarly literature, as it manifests on the evening news, as it is curated in museums, big and small; as it is performed in documentary and dramatic films and as it shows up in everyday life.

In addition to critical evaluations of books and websites (Reviews) and poetic research and fiction (Creative Writing), our articles explore material and visual culture (Objects); pedagogy, the writing of literary scholarship, and the historian’s craft (Teach); and diverse aspects of America’s past and its many peoples (Learn). For more great content, check out our other projects, (Just Teach One) and (Just Teach One African American Print).


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Author, “Title of Article,” Commonplace: the journal of early American life, date accessed, URL.

Sophie White, “Trading Looks Race, Religion and Dress in French America,” Commonplace: the journal of early American life, accessed September 30, 2019, https://commonplace.online/article/trading-looks-race-religion-dress-french-america/


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