Inscription

lower right: B. West; on back of canvas in a later hand: Elisabeth Countess of Effingham / Daughter of Peter Beckford Esq:r

Provenance

William Beckford [1760-1844], Fonthill Abbey, Wiltshire, and Bath, England; his daughter, Susan Euphemia Beckford, 10th Duchess of Hamilton [1786-1859], Hamilton Palace, County Lanark, Scotland; by descent to William Alexander Louis Stephen Douglas-Hamilton, 12th Duke of Hamilton [1845-1895]; (his estate sale, Christie, Manson and Woods, London, 6 November 1919, no. 77); bought by (Tooth Brothers, London);[1] sold 4 February 1920 to Thomas B. Clarke [1848 1931], New York;[2] his estate; sold as part of the Clarke collection on 29 January 1936, through (M. Knoedler & Co., New York), to The A.W. Mellon Educational and Charitable Trust, Pittsburgh; gift 1947 to NGA.

Exhibition History
1921
Exhibition of Paintings by Early American Portrait Painters, The Union League Club, New York, November 1921, no. 18, as Elizabeth Beckford.
1928
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 Elizabeth Gordon.
1982
Extended loan for use by the Ambassador, U.S. Embassy residence, Stockholm, Sweden, 1982-1986.
Bibliography
1801
Britton, John. The Beauties of Wiltshire. 10 vols. London, 1801: 1:230.
1805
"A Correct Catalogue of the Works of Mr. West." Public Characters of 1805. London, 1805: 561.
1805
"A Correct List of the Works of Mr. West." Universal Magazine 3 (1805): 528.
1808
"A Correct Catalogue of the Works of Benjamin West, Esq." La Belle Assemblée or Bell's Court and Fashionable Magazine 4, Supplement (1908): 14, no. 135.
1820
Galt, John. "A Catalogue of the Works of Mr. West." The Life, Studies, and Works of Benjamin West, Esq.. London, 1820: 220.
1859
Redding, Cyrus, ed. Memoirs of William Beckford. 2 vols. London, 1859: 2:369-370.
1893
Lansdown, H. V. Recollections of the Late William Beckford, of Fonthill, Wilts. and Lansdown, Bath. Edited by Charlotte Lansdown. Privately printed, 1893: 9.
1928
Portraits by Early American Artists of the Seventeenth, Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries, Collected by Thomas B. Clarke. Exh. cat. Philadelphia Museum of Art, 1928, unnumbered, as Elizabeth Gordon.
1954
Gardner, Albert Ten Eyck. "Beckford's Gothic Wests." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 13 (October 1954): 41-49.
1957
Alexander, Boyd, ed. Life at Fonthill, 1807-1822, With Interludes in Paris and London, from the Correspondence of William Beckford. London, 1957: 336.
1970
American Paintings and Sculpture: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1970: 120, repro.
1977
Dillenberger 1977, 151, no. 135.
1980
American Paintings: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1980: 255, repro.
1980
Hamilton-Phillips, Martha. "Benjamin West and William Beckford: Some Projects for Fonthill." Metropolitan Museum Journal 15 (1980): 157-174, repro.
1986
Von Erffa and Staley 1986, 107, 504-505, no. 615, repro.
1992
American Paintings: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1992: 378, repro.
1995
Miles, Ellen G. American Paintings of the Eighteenth Century. The Collections of the National Gallery of Art Systematic Catalogue. Washington, D.C., 1995: 341-344, repro. 343.