John Singleton Copleys portrait of Paul Revere captured the dignity of an artisan and was unusual because the subject was not a member of the colonial elite. Many other eighteenth-century portraits were commissioned by affluent merchants and influential politicians.
1. Most family portraits are of middle and upper class families. How can historians learn about family life among the working and poorer classes?
2. Most of Peales portraits were commissioned by patrons. How might this affect the ways in which the family was depicted?