The Bonapartes at an Inn

Gerome Ferris recorded his painting The Bonapartes, 1804 in detail in this ink drawing. We do not know whether he made the drawing before the painting as a guide or afterward as a record, and the current location of the painting is unknown. He researched the historic details in depth to ensure his picture was accurate. He took pride in his chosen calling, painter-historian, which he seriously pursued from about 1900.
The drawing shows Jerome Bonaparte, Napoleon Bonaparte’s youngest brother, and his American wife, Elizabeth Patterson of Baltimore, at an inn during their travels in the United States. Jerome Bonaparte had taken refuge here during the Napoleonic Wars and married during his stay in this country. A furious Napoleon rejected Jerome’s American wife, who returned to the United States. Jerome married again to support his brother’s dynastic ambition.
Currently not on view
Object Name
original artist
Ferris, Jean Leon Gerome
Physical Description
paper (overall material)
ink (part material)
graphite (overall material)
image: 23 cm x 32.5 cm; 9 1/16 in x 12 13/16 in
sheet: 25.5 cm x 38 cm; 10 1/16 in x 14 15/16 in
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Ferris Collection
See more items in
Culture and the Arts: Graphic Arts
Ferris Collection
Data Source
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Related Publication
Mitnick, Barbara. Jean Leon Gerome Ferris, 1863-1930: American Painter Historian

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