Dolley Madison
Original Author: Gilbert Stuart
Created: 1804
Medium: Oil on canvas

Dolley Madison (1804)

Dolley Madison, dressed in the French style and wearing a gold chain around her neck, exhibits a warm half-smile in this portrait by Gilbert Stuart. Created in 1804, the painting was to be paired with another 1804 portrait by Stuart—of Dolley Madison's husband, James Madison, then serving as secretary of state. When the paintings were hung side by side, the couple turned in toward one another. Both portraits survived the burning of the White House in August 1814 because the paintings were then at Montpelier, the Madisons' rural estate in Virginia. Dolley Madison's portrait is now at the White House.