A Visit from the Old Mistress

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A Visit from the Old Mistress
A meeting between four women; three freed slaves and their former mistress.
Artist Winslow Homer
Year 1876 (1876)
Type Oil on canvas
Condition On display
Location Smithsonian Museum of American Art, Washington, DC
URL example.com

A Visit from the Old Mistress is an 1876 painting by American artist Winslow Homer. It was one of several works that Homer created during a mid-1870s visit to Virginia, where he had served as a war correspondent during the Civil War.[1] Scholars have noted that the painting's composition is taken from Homer's earlier painting Prisoners from the Front, which depicts a group of captive confederate soldiers defiantly regarding a union officer.[2] It, along with Homer's other paintings of black southern life from this period, have been praised as an "invaluable record of an important segment of life in Virginia during the Reconstruction." [1]

External video
Podcast: The Civil War and American Art, Episode 5, Smithsonian American Art Museum[3]


  1. ^ a b Wood, Peter; Dalton, Karen (1989). "Winslow Homer's images of Blacks: The Civil War and Reconstruction years". Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Bulletin (Virginia Museum of Fine Arts) 49 (3): 3–4. 
  2. ^ Calo, Mary Ann (1980). "Winslow Homer's Visits to Virginia during Reconstruction". American Art Journal (Kennedy Galleries Inc.) 12 (1): 4–27. 
  3. ^ "The Civil War and American Art, Episode 5". Smithsonian American Art Museum. Retrieved February 15, 2012.