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Overview
Information on this painting can be found in the Gallery publication American Paintings of the Eighteenth Century, pages 261-263, which is available as a free PDF https://www.nga.gov/content/dam/ngaweb/research/publications/pdfs/american-paintings-18th-century.pdf
Provenance

The sitter's son, James Edward Fisher MacDonough [1825-1849], Montclair, New Jersey; his brother, Charles Shaler MacDonough [1818-1871], Middletown, Connecticut; his brother, Augustus Rodney MacDonough [1820-1907], Middletown, Connecticut;[1] his nephew, Rodney MacDonough [1863-1935], Brookline, Massachusetts; his son, Charles Vance MacDonough [b. 1907], Wellesley, Massachusetts;[2] (M. Knoedler & Co. New York); sold 21 January 1937 to The A.W. Mellon Educational and Charitable Trust, Pittsburgh; gift 1942 to NGA.

Exhibition History
1853
The Washington Exhibition in aid of the New-York Gallery of the Fine Arts, at the American Art-Union Gallery, New York, 1853, no. 160
1879
Century Club, New York, 1879-1907
1936
Masterpieces of American Historical Portraiture, M. Knoedler and Co., New York, 1936, no. 13
1940
Loan Exhibition: Naval Personages and Traditions, Naval Academy Museum, United States Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland, 1940, no. 44
1943
American Paintings, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1943.
2012
1812: A Nation Emerges, National Portrait Gallery, Washington, 2012-2013.
Bibliography
1879
Mason, George C. The Life and Works of Gilbert Stuart. New York, 1879: 217-217.
1880
MFA 1880, 46, no. 382
1909
Macdonough, Rodney. Life of Commodore Thomas Macdonough, U.S. Navy. Boston, 1909: repro. frontispiece.
1949
Paintings and Sculpture from the Mellon Collection. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1949 (reprinted 1953 and 1958): 140, repro.
1970
American Paintings and Sculpture: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1970: 104, repro.
1975
Walker, John. National Gallery of Art, Washington. New York, 1975: 383, repro.
1980
American Paintings: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1980: 232, repro.
1984
Walker, John. National Gallery of Art, Washington. Rev. ed. New York, 1984: 378, no. 535, color repro.
1986
McLanathan 1986, 147, repro.
1992
American Paintings: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1992: 357, 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: 261-263, color repro. 262.
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