Edwin Howland Blashfield (1848-1936)
Edwin Howland Blashfield (1848-1936)

Trumpets of Missouri

Edwin Howland Blashfield (1848-1936)
Trumpets of Missouri
signed and dated 'Edwin Howland Blashfield/19©18' (lower left)
oil on canvas
79½ x 108 in. (201.9 x 274.3 cm.)
The artist.
Daughters of the American Revolution, Kansas City Chapter, Kansas City, Missouri, acquired from the above.
Kansas City Urban Public Library, Kansas City, Missouri, gift from the above.
Amphora Arts and Antiques, Beverly Hills, California.
Acquired by the present owner from the above, 1993.
"Morgan Galleries and Other Exhibitions; Art at Home and Abroad," New York Times, June 16, 1918, n.p., illustrated.
"Blashfield's Last Mural," American Art News, vol. 16, no. 35, July 13, 1918, p. 2.
Twenty-Second Report of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution: March 1, 1918, to March 1, 1919, Washington, D.C., 1920, p. 150 (as The Call of Missouri).
Historical Sketch of the Kansas City Public Library, 1911-1936: With Extracts from Annual Reports of Librarian, 1911-1920, Kansas City, Missouri, 1937, p. 52 (as The Call of Missouri).
The Kansas City Star, September 11, 1949, p. 104.
L.N. Amico, The Mural Decorations of Edwin Howland Blashfield, 1848-1936, Williamstown, Massachusetts, 1978, p. 68.
Jersey City Museum, Heroes in the Fight for Beauty: The Muralists of the Hudson County Court House, Jersey City, New Jersey, 1986, p. 94.
L.H. Kavanaugh, "Historical Mural Waits to Be Found," The Kansas City Star, August 5, 2007 (as The Call of Missouri).
M.R. Weiner, ed., Edwin Howland Blashfield: Master American Muralist, New York, 2009, pp. 78, 140, illustrated (as The Call of Missouri (aka Missouri Watching the Departure of her Troops or The Trumpets of Missouri)).
New York, Knoedler Galleries, June 1918.

Lot Essay

Known for his paintings on the central dome of the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C., Edwin Blashfield was a leader in the American Renaissance movement, which promoted the creation of murals and decoration in public buildings. He was admired for the Academic Realism of his classically inspired murals, and his commissions included the dome of the manufacturer's building at the 1893 World Columbian Exposition in Chicago, Illinois; the grand ballroom of the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel, New York; the Detroit Public Library, Detroit, Michigan; and the State Capitols of Iowa, Minnesota, and Wisconsin.

Commissioned in 1918 by the Daughters of the American Revolution, Kansas City Chapter, Trumpets of Missouri commemorates Missouri's contribution to World War I and is a rare surviving mural by the artist. According to a June 16, 1918 New York Times article, "The composition is intended to give a historical outline of the development of the State. Before the Louisiana Purchase, Missouri belonged to France, then to Spain, and, again, to France. During the Civil War she was tossed from the Confederate to the Union side. The wide range of her racial and political affiliations is indicated in the painting. Missouri is symbolized by a seated female figure watching the departure of her troops. Over her head the Stars and Stripes billows on a strong wind in noble folds. Clad in armor, her hand grasping a sheathed sword, she looks out over a vast expanse of rolling country under a sky filled with clouds. Behind her stand a group of trumpeters representing Old France, Old Spain, the Union and Confederate forces, while in front of her is a figure in khaki representing the Union of the present time, sounding the call to arms. The troops responding are carrying the American flag and the Missouri State flag."

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