Charles Carnan Ridgely

Date:
1950 (after 1820 original)
Creator:
C. G. Stapko (after Thomas Sully)

Charles Carnan Ridgely (1760-1829), son of John and Achsah Ridgely Carnan, sister of Captain Charles Ridgely (1733-1790), was educated and trained in business by his uncle. When Capt. Ridgely died childless in 1790, Charles Ridgely Carnan inherited the Hampton estate, iron furnaces, and additional property, on the condition he change his surname to Ridgely. Charles Carnan Ridgely eventually owned more than 25,000 acres of land in northern Maryland and over 300 slaves. In addition to his vast agricultural, industrial, and commercial interests, he served as a representative from Baltimore County in the Maryland legislature from 1790-1795, as a state senator from 1796-1800, and as a three-term governor of Maryland, ending in 1819. Known throughout his life as General Ridgely, Charles Carnan Ridgely’s military record culminated with his appointment as a brigadier general in the state militia in 1796. His original 1820 portrait by Thomas Sully was donated by John Ridgely, Jr. to National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. in 1945.

Description (physical):

Material: Oil on Canvass. H: 122cm, W: 97.2cm.

Location:
535 Hampton Lane Towson,Maryland 21286
Identifier:
HAMP1189
Institution:
Hampton National Historic Site

Priscilla Dorsey Ridgely

Date:
1805
Creator:
Rembrandt Peale (copy)

In 1782, Charles Ridgely Carnan married Priscilla Hill Dorsey (1762-1814), the youngest sister of his uncle Capt. Charles Ridgely’s wife, Rebecca Dorsey Ridgely. The first two mistresses of Hampton were sisters. During her 22-year marriage, she bore her husband 14 children, and 11  survived to adulthood, a remarkable percentage in those days. Like her older sister, Priscilla was an ardent Methodist renowned for her piety, a trait she passed on to most of her eight daughters. The restrained style of her clothing as seen in this portrait further reflects her Methodist views. The painting at Hampton is an early 19th century copy of the original by Rembrandt Peale, now owned by the State of Maryland and exhibited at the Governor’s Mansion in Annapolis.

Description (physical):

Material: Oil on canvas. H: 75cm, W: 62.2cm.

Location:
535 Hampton Lane Towson,Maryland 21286
Identifier:
HAMP1094
Institution:
Hampton National Historic Site

Lozenge-shaped Serving Dish

Date:
1820
Publisher/Studio:
Shropshire, England: Coalport Porcelain Works

This dish is part of a large dessert service originally ordered by Charles Carnan Ridgely of which 17 plates and 10 serving dishes survive. The pieces are embellished with Ridgely family stag’s head crest.

Description (physical):

Material: Porcelain. H: 6.5cm, W: 22.7cm, L: 31.7cm.

Location:
535 Hampton Lane Towson,Maryland 21286
Identifier:
HAMP40347
Institution:
Hampton National Historic Site

Armchair

Date:
1790-1810
Creator:
John Finlay, Hugh Finlay (repainted)
Publisher/Studio:
Baltimore

Painted furniture was popular at Hampton from the time Charles Carnan Ridgely (1760-1829) purchased a suite of white and gilt painted seating furniture in New York in 1797. Around the same time, he also acquired a set of painted armchairs of English manufacture, two of which survive in the Hampton collection. Governor Ridgely had the chairs repainted within a decade or two of their manufacture. The design of this second layer of paint clearly indicates that the repainting was done in Baltimore, probably by the firm of John and Hugh Finlay, who were to be long-term suppliers of “fancy” furniture, as it was then called, to the Ridgely family. Notably, one of the chairs has a view of Hampton painted on its crest rail. Later in the 19th century when this style of painted furniture had become unfashionable, Margaretta Ridgely (1824-1904) had the chair’s legs cut down and the frame upholstered and slip covered. In this state, the chair was used in both the Great Hall and the Music Room, as shown by historic photographs.

Description (physical):

Material: Beech and other woods. H: 78.8cm, W: 57.5cm, D: 49 cm.

Location:
535 Hampton Lane Towson,Maryland 21286
Identifier:
HAMP3921; HAMP3921_chairDetail
Institution:
Hampton National Historic Site

Wager

Date:
1809
Creator:
Charles Ridgely (written to Myles Seldon)

A proposed bet made between Gov. Charles Ridgely and Myles Seldon, concerning a race to be run in October 1809 by Ridgely's renowned Thoroughbred "Post Boy" and Mr. Wilkes' horse "Potomac." The wager was proposed on January 10, 1809 for the astounding sum of $10,000, nearly half a million dollars in today’s money.

Description (physical):

Material: Paper. L: 27cm, W: 21.5cm.

Location:
535 Hampton Lane Towson,Maryland 21286
Identifier:
HAMP3514
Institution:
Hampton National Historic Site

Runaway Reward Notice

Date:
1791
Creator:
Charles Carnan Ridgely

Charles Carnan Ridgely was seeking the return of his slave Bateman and offered a reward that increased in size as the distance from Hampton grew. Remarkably, despite his considerable height and history as a runaway, Bateman later became a most favored slave as a jockey for Ridgely’s racehorses. He was even given a horse of his own to ride.

Description (physical):

Material: Paper. L: 22.5cm, W: 20.5cm.

Location:
535 Hampton Lane Towson,Maryland 21286
Identifier:
HAMP6910
Institution:
Hampton National Historic Site