Judith Armistead Carter (Mrs. Robert Carter, 1665-1699)

Artist: Unknown
Date: ?

This portrait descended in the family and is identified by tradition. The life dates of the subject raise questions about the subject and the date, but it is possibly a later copy of an earlier painting or a post-mortem portrait. Judith Armistead Carter was the first wife of Robert “King” Carter and the mother of John Carter who inherited Shirley and Corotoman. She was the daughter of John Armistead of Hesse.

Possible Reference: “my pictures each Child to have his own picture my son [John] to have my first picture and his mothers also my gold watch and diamond ring my Son Robert to have my other picture & his mothers picture,” Will of Robert “King” Carter, 1726

Dimensions: 48 5/8 x 39 in. (123.5 x 99.06 cm.)

The subject sits by a window wearing a blue wrap dress with a pearl near her waist. Her left arm rests on a large red cushion on a window sill. There is a view to a landscape out the window to her left.

See: Graham Hood, Charles Bridges and William Dering: Two Virginia Painters, 1735-1750 (1975), 78; Edmund Berkeley, Jr., ed., The Diary, Correspondence, and Papers of Robert “King” Carter of Virginia, 1701-1732 (2009), 25.

Decade: Unknown
Credits: Courtesy of Shirley Plantation.