Newell, Claude Potter - portrait of a 20C lady

This miniature portrait is signed "C P Newell 1918". Researching the artist C P Newell, has not been easy, but he has now been identified as Claude Potter Newell (1870->1930), born 10 Oct 1870 in Providence RI, son of Doctor Timothy Newell of Massachusetts (Mar 1820-30 Jun 1901), (but who, according to the 1900 census, was born in Sep 1817), and Annie Potter Smith (Jan 1844->1920) (but born as Annie Potter Bates) who were married on 9 Sep 1867. Thus Claude's father was aged around 50 when he was married.

Claude Newell has been traced through the census records. In 1900 he was an artist living with his parents in Providence RI. In 1910 (MS) and 1920 (NY) he was married and also describes himself as artist. Presumably he was successful, as both times he had a live in servant. However, for the 1930 census (RI), he described himself as "commercial traveller - movie films".

It seems he was married twice, as in 1910 his wife was named Anna L Newell (1875-?) born in Massachusetts, whereas in 1920/1930 his wife was named Margaret born in Canada, but with conflicting birth dates of 1892 and 1882. Her birthplace of Canada fits with frequent visits of C P Newell to Canada. There do not appear to have been any children.

Although omitted from the reference books, Claude P Newell was obviously a highly regarded artist of the time, as in 1915 Eleanor and Franklin Roosevelt sat for their tenth wedding anniversary miniature portraits, see Hyde Park: Tenth wedding anniversary portraits (1915) of Eleanor & Franklin by Claude P. Newell in Presidential Museum.

The sitter in this portrait is unknown. 1027

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