noted as inscribed on original stretcher (there is no inscription on present stretcher): Brig. Genl. Mordecai Gist by James Peale
(Rose M. [Mrs. Augustus] de Forest, New York); sold 15 August 1927 to Thomas B. Clarke [1848-1931], New York, as a portrait of Mordecai Gist by James Peale; sold by Clarke's executors to (M. Knoedler & Co., New York), from whom it was purchased 29 January 1936, as part of the Clarke collection, by The A.W. Mellon Educational and Charitable Trust, Pittsburgh; gift to NGA, 1947.
- A Loan Exhibition of Paintings by Early American Portrait Painters, The Century Association, New York, no. 3, as General Mordecai Gist by James Peale.
- Portraits by Early American Artists of the Seventeenth, Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries, Collected by Thomas B. Clarke, Philadelphia Museum of Art, 1928-1931, unnumbered and unpaginated catalogue, as General Mordecai Gist by James Peale.
- Sherman, Frederic Fairchild. Early American Painting. New York and London, 1932: 64.
- American Paintings and Sculpture: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1970: 160, repro., as Portrait of a Man by American (?).
- American Paintings: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1980: 308, as Portrait of a Man by Unknown [Formerly Considered American].
- European Paintings: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1985: 415, repro., as Portrait of a Man by Unknown Nationality 19th Century.
- Hayes, John. British Paintings of the Sixteenth through Nineteenth Centuries. The Collections of the National Gallery of Art Systematic Catalogue. Washington, D.C., 1992: 316-317, repro. 317.
The canvas is plain woven; it has been lined. The ground is buff colored. The painting is executed thinly, with little modeling and with low impasto in the highlights. The paint surface is abraded and has been extensively retouched, principally in the background. The thick, natural resin varnish has discolored yellow to a moderate degree.