A website from the Massachusetts Historical Society; founded 1791.

“Politicks and War”

"Politicks and War" illustrates the role played by Boston and Massachusetts in the American colonies's bid for independence from Great Britain. 

Represented here are different objects—portraits of Governor Thomas Hutchinson and Revolutionary War hero Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette; a medal and a pistol belonging to naval captain John Paul Jones; and a map of Lake Champlain, an important battleground area in the Revolutionary War—collected and preserved by the Society.

Thomas Hutchinson
Portrait, oil on canvas by Edward Truman, 1741

A Survey of Lake Champlain,including Lake George, Crown Point, and St. John. ...
by William Brasier

Pocket pistol belonging to John Paul Jones
circa 1776

Comitia Americana medal, Jones off Scotland's coast
Copper medal by Augustin Dupré, circa 1787

Gilbert du Motier, marquis de Lafayette
Portrait, oil on canvas by Joseph Boze, 1790


Exhibition: 13 June to 7 September 2013

What is the meaning of historical objects? Why are they preserved, and why have they survived? Are they valued for their associations with notable historical figures or landmark events, as objects of beauty, as the survival of relics from a distant past, or for the stories they convey? This exhibition explores these questions through the display of 18th-century portraits and objects from the Society's collections, along with rarely seen engravings, needlework, maps, weapons, furniture, clothing, scientific instruments, and silver.

The exhibit runs from 13 June through 7 September 2013, Monday through Saturday, 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM.

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