Diplomatic Reception Rooms, U.S. Department of State

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Web Property of the U.S. Department of State


Object Details

Casimir Gregory Stapko (American, 1913-2006), after John Trumbull (American, 1756-1843)
North American
oil on canvas
Overall: 28 in x 23 1/4 in; 71.12 cm x 59.055 cm
It was among three artworks painted in March-May 1949 that was purchased by the Department of State from Mr. Stapko on June 2, 1949.
No inscriptions on the face. An inscription on the back reads: "Copy painted from original in City Hall New York by C.G. Stapko of Edward Livingston by John Trumbull Ord. No. 9301-49."
Credit Line
The Diplomatic Reception Rooms, U.S. Department of State, Washington, D.C.
The Diplomatic Reception Rooms, U.S. Department of State, Washington, D.C.
Accession Number


Edward Livingston (1764–1836) was born on his family’s estate at Clermont, New York. He studied at the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University) and opened a law practice in New York City. With the support of his older brother Robert, who had been secretary of foreign affairs during the Articles of Confederation government, Livingston entered politics. He served in the U.S. House of Representatives and as mayor of New York before moving to New Orleans, where he was aide-de-camp to General Andrew Jackson in the famous battle at the end of the War of 1812. In the 1820s Livingston represented Louisiana in both the U.S. House and U.S. Senate, and in 1831 President Jackson appointed him secretary of state.

Livingston inherited, and could not resolve, the tensions with Mexico over Texas and with Britain over the boundary dispute in Maine. Negotiations during his tenure secured commercial agreements with Naples, Muscat, Russia, Siam, and Turkey. But despite the Monroe Doctrine’s warning that the Americas were no longer open for European colonization, Livingston did not prevent Britain’s seizure of the Falkland Islands, off Argentina. 

On the day of Livingston’s resignation as secretary of state, President Jackson appointed him U.S. minister to France, where he was able to advance repayments for decades-old claims over the seizure of U.S. ships and cargo during France’s war with Great Britain. Payment finally came in 1836, after Livingston’s departure and death.