Title: Asa Jewett
Object Name: Painting
Object ID: 2020.019
Creator: Hamblin, Sturtevant J. (1816-1884)Artist
Description: Portrait of Asa Jewett (1815-1883) of Milton Mills, NH, by Sturtevant J. Hamblin (1816-1884). Oil on canvas. Inscribed in black paint on reverse of canvas, "Painted by / S. J. Hamblin / E. Boston / Aug 1848". Also inscribed in black paint, upper right, "ES / 1933". Inscribed in pencil, upper left, "Restored / 194[?]". Framed.
Dimensions: H-27 W-22 inches
Provenance: Asa Jewett (1815-1883) was part of a family of woodworking mill owners in Milton Mills, NH. His grandfather, Paul Jewett (1744-1835), owned an early sawmill known as the Jewett Mill, which was operated by Asa, his father, Gilman Jewett, and uncle, Nathaniel Jewett. They incorporated the Milton Mills Manufacturing Company in 1837, transforming the mill into a lathe and turning mill where they produced wood products. Around the date his portrait was painted, Asa was listed as a lumber dealer in the census. Milton Mills, a village within the town of Milton, is situated on the Salmon Falls River, a tributary of the Piscataqua. This river forms the border in that part of the state between New Hampshire and Maine and, during the age of waterpower, was heavily industrialized along much of its length. In 1837, Asa Jewett married Mary Ann Richards (1813-1910) of Exeter, NH, and lived on the main street of Milton Mills, just north of Upper Square. Jewett served as town selectman, and was a founding member of the Milton Baptist Church in 1834, and clerk of the church, 1837-1850. By 1860, however, Asa Jewett had become a farmer. The portrait descended through their daughter, Alberta Jewett Cutts, to a son, Carlton Jewett Hargraves, then to his daughter, Juanita Cutts Hargraves Yesulton. It was next owned by Norman Gronning.
Sturtevant J. Hamblin (1816-1884), the son of Almery and Sally Clark Hamblin, was born in Portland, ME. Hamblin came from a family of artisans that included his grandfather, George Hamblin, who was a painter and glazer, his father, and his brothers Nathaniel, Joseph G., and Eli. Sturtevant's sister Rosamund married the itinerant portrait painter William Matthew Prior in 1828. Hamblin is documented to have worked as a portrait painter in Boston between 1841 and 1856. He resided for several years with the Priors, and may have been his brother-in-law's pupil. Three of the Hamblins advertised as house, sign and fancy painters, and Sturtevant probably earned part of his living in this manner. By 1856, however, he had abandoned painting and entered into a partnership with his brother Joseph, selling men's clothing.
Credit Line: New Hampshire Historical Society Purchase, Katharine Prentis Murphy Fund
Jewett, Asa (1815-1883),
Hamblin, Sturtevant J. (1816-1884)