Thursday, April 28, 2016

The Wandering Paths of History

Sculptor Belle Kinney's "Confederate Women"
In searching pictures for last week's blog about the $10 and $20 bills, I came across pictures of statues for both Alexander Hamilton and Andrew Jackson, both full length and both in the Capitol.  Like so many adventures on which the research for Isaac B. Werner's manuscript have taken me, the statues of Hamilton and Jackson took me down an unexpected path!

Unfortunately, I did not find an image of Jackson's sculpture free to post, but I did learn about the sculptors, and the picture at top-right of this blog is by one of them.  Jackson was sculpted by Belle Kinney (1890) and Leopold F. Scholz (1877-1946).  The two sculptors were wife and husband, and in her private life Belle went by Belle Kinney Scholz.  However, professionally she retained her maiden name.  She won her first prize for a sculpture when she was 7 years old for a bust of her father.  At 15 she entered the Art Institute of Chicago, and at 17 she received her first commission to sculpt Jere Baxter, the organizer of the Tennessee Central Railroad.  She met her husband Leopold at the Art Institute, and they married in 1921. Leopold, 13 years older than Belle, was born in Austria.  With two exceptions, all of his known sculptures were done with his wife.  Belle is known not only for their joint achievements but also for her individual work, such as her best known sculpture, "Confederate Women."

As interesting to me as the information about Jackson's sculptors was, it was what I discovered about Alexander Hamilton's sculptor that intrigued me most, and although I have wandered a long way to learn more about Dr. Horatio Stone, the sculptor of Hamilton pictured at left, I have not been able to satisfy my search.

Horatio Stone was born in 1808 to Reuben and Nancy Stone in New York State.  He practiced medicine until devoting himself full-time to sculpture in the 1840s.  He moved to Washington, D.C. and helped establish the Washington Art Association, for which he served as President.  During his career he maintained studios in both Washington, D.C. and Carrara, Italy.  He died of "Roman Fever" in 1875 and is interred in Italy.  A close study of details, such as of Hamilton's hands, shows the significance of his medical training to the sculptures he created.

None of that, however, was what so intrigued me.  My husband's second great Grandfather is named Horatio Gates Stone and was born in New York State in 1812.  In doing extensive genealogy research  I have learned that the Stone family repeated names from generation to generation, and one of the names so often repeated was Horatio.  Horatio Stone the sculptor had no descendants, but is it possible that Horatio Gates Stone and Horatio Stone might have common ancestors?  At this point, my "wandering path of history" has not taken me far enough to answer that question.  What I can share is that the repetition of Horatio among my husband's Stone ancestors is so common and confusing that years ago I posted on an attempt to clarify all the repeated uses of the name Horatio, which I titled "Too Many Horatioes!"

In Isaac B. Werner's family, names were also repeated from one generation to another.  Isaac shared the same middle name with his twin brother Henry, their middle name "Beckley" having been their mother's maiden name. As for the name Henry, it was not only Isaac's brother's given name but also the name of his cousin, Henry Werner, with whom he left Wernersville to seek their fortunes in the West, but also the name of his favorite Uncle Henry Werner and other relatives.  Repeated given names in the Werner family have been a challenge to my research.

1 comment:

The Blog Fodder said...

Our family, too, repeated names for generations. No imagination whatsoever. John, James Joseph and Samuel until H___ wouldn't have them. I do hope you can track down your Horatio Stone, though. It is always interesting to find some historical character to tie to. Makes things seem more real.