John Samuel Blunt, Painter
Portsmouth Visual Label Program
New Hampshire State Seal, 1819 Completing his apprenticeship in 1819, Blunt sketched from nature and painted landscape views. His earliest known work is this Seal of New Hampshire painted for the new state capitol building erected in Concord in 1816. The seal features, as a symbol of the state’s economy, a ship under construction at the water’s edge, a scene familiar to Blunt from his youth in Portsmouth. John Samuel Blunt, New Hampshire State Seal, painted panel. Courtesy of New Hampshire Historical Society, Concord, N.H.
Advertisement in NH Gazette In 1821, the 23-year-old John S. Blunt began ten years
View of Portsmouth Blunt’s landscape masterpiece is a huge View of Portsmouth from Freeman’s Point about 1830. The heart of his panorama captures the city from a mile upriver. To the left is the wooden pile bridge from Noble’s Island in Kittery, built in 1822. Across the North Mill Pond in the foreground are sailing ships beside North End wharves and warehouses. The compact urban skyline is punctuated by a windmill atop a nearby hill and the towers, spires, and cupolas of the city’s eight churches. John Samuel Blunt, Detail View of Portsmouth from Freeman’s Point, circa 1830, Oil on canvas. Courtesy of City of Portsmouth, Gift of Mayor William H. Sise.
Self Portrait John Samuel Blunt, 1798-1835, self-portrait,
View of the Piscataqua River While Blunt supported his growing family by his craft, he also found time to paint a number of water views of ships and the Portsmouth Naval Ship Yard, such as this 1824 view of the Piscataqua River from Nobel’s Wharf in 1825, he opened a drawing and painting school and soon moved his studio to new rooms at the corner of State and Court streets. In 1830, Blunt moved to Boston, where he continued to work as an artist until 1835, when he died at age 37 on a home from New Orleans to Boston. John Samuel Blunt, View of the Piscataqua River from Nobel’s Wharf, 1824. Oil on canvas. Courtesy of Portsmouth Athenaeum. Gift of Joseph and Jean Sawtelle. Funding for this marker was provided by the city of Portsmouth, 2011.
Erected 2011 by City of Portsmouth NH.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Arts, Letters, Music. A significant historical date for this entry is June 3, 1821.
Location. 43° 4.748′ N, 70° 45.506′ W. Marker is in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, in Rockingham County. Marker is on Market Street, on the right when traveling west. Market is directly across the street from the Moffatt-Ladd House on Market Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 154 Market Street, Portsmouth NH 03801, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this
Credits. This page was last revised on August 24, 2016. It was originally submitted on August 20, 2016, by James R. Murray of Elkton, Florida. This page has been viewed 233 times since then and 2 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on August 20, 2016, by James R. Murray of Elkton, Florida. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.