Florence MacKubin

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Florence MacKubin
Florence Mackubin, Self-portrait.jpg
Born (1857-05-19)May 19, 1857
Florence, Italy
Died February 2, 1918(1918-02-02) (aged 60)
Baltimore, Maryland
Resting place St. Anne's Cemetery, Annapolis, Maryland
Coordinates: 38°58′54.69″N 76°29′49.73″W / 38.9818583°N 76.4971472°W / 38.9818583; -76.4971472
Nationality American, born in Italy
Known for Painting

Florence MacKubin (or Mackubin) (May 19, 1857 in Florence – February 2, 1918 in Baltimore) was an American portrait painter in miniature, pastel, and oil colors. She painted portraits of prominent people in the United States and the United Kingdom, as well as several famous copies of portraits, and exhibited at the Paris Salon, the London Academy, and the National Academy, New York.[1]

Early life[edit]

Florence MacKubin, George Mackubin (1789-1853), 1905, State of Maryland

Florence MacKubin was born in 1857[a] in Florence, Italy, while her parents, Charles Nicholas and Ellen Marietta (Fay) MacKubin, were spending a year abroad. Her father died in 1863, after which her mother returned to Europe with the children.[2]

MacKubin made a portrait of her grandfather, George Mackubin, who had been the Treasurer of the Western Shore, for the State of Maryland.[5]


MacKubin studied drawing in Florence, Italy. She then studied at Les Ruches, a Protestant school at Fontainbleau under M. Lainé.[2] In Munich she studied under Professor Herterich. She studied under Louis Deschamps in oil and Julius Rolshoven in pastel, and Mlle. Jeanne Devina in miniature painting in Paris.[1][2]


Queen Henrietta Maria, 1901, Maryland State House
Sir Robert Eden, 1st Baronet, of Maryland. MacKubin made paintings of her ancestors, the first and second Barons Baltimore, based upon originals owned by Sir William Eden.[2] He was governor of Maryland from 1769 to 1776.[6]

The Board of Public Works of Maryland appointed her to make copies of portraits of George Calvert, 1st Baron Baltimore and Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore. For the Board she also painted a copy of Warwick Castle's famous Van Dyke portrait of Queen Henrietta Maria,[7] for whom Maryland is named.[1][8]

MacKubin made paintings of society women in England and in the United States cities of Boston, New York, Baltimore, Washington, and St. Louis. In 12 years she received commissions for 360 miniature portraits.[2] The people whose portraits she painted include Joel Chandler Harris, Basil Gildersleeve, Mrs. Charles J. Bonaparte, Justice Horace Gray, Senator George F. Hoar, and Mrs. Thomas F. Bayard.[1][8]

She began exhibiting her works and winning awards in the United States, London and Paris beginning in 1893.[2] Her life-sized portrait of Cardinal Gibbons was exhibited in 1903 in Baltimore and in 1904 at the St. Louis Exposition.[1][8] In 1897 she won the bronze medal and diploma at the Tennessee Exposition.[9] She exhibited at the Royal Academy of Arts and made portraits of the Marchioness of Bath, the Countess of Warwick and others in England.[9]

She was vice president of the Baltimore Watercolor Club.[9]

MacKubin resided in Baltimore for most of her life and kept a studio and summer home in St. Andrews, New Brunswick.[1][8]

Personal life[edit]

MacKubin was a member of the Maryland Society of the Colonial Dames of America.[10]

She died February 2, 1918.[11] Richard H. Spencer of the Maryland Historical Society said of her:

In the death of Miss Florence MacKubin, this Society has lost a valued and esteemed member, the State of Maryland a loyal and devoted daughter and the world of art a conscientious and meritorious disciple.[11]


  1. ^ Her year of birth has also been given as 1861.[2] But Florence was listed as a 3 year-old, born in Florence, Italy, on the 1860 U.S. Census in St. Paul, Minnesota.[3] Her month and day of birth are stated as May 19 by Who's Who, who thought she was born in the 1860s.[4]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Clement, Clara Erskine (1904). "Mackubin, Florence". Women in the Fine Arts. Houghton Mifflin. pp. 219–220. 
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "MacKubin, Florence". The National Cyclopaedia of American Biography: 293. 1916. 
  3. ^ "Florence MacKubin (3 years old, born Florence, Italy), 4th Ward of St. Paul, Minnesota", 1860 U.S. census, population schedule., Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, p. 240 
  4. ^ John William Leonard; Albert Nelson Marquis (1901). Who's who in America. Marquis Who's Who. p. 734. 
  5. ^ George Mackubin. Archives of the State of Maryland. Retrieved August 23, 2014.
  6. ^ Jane W. McWilliams (3 May 2011). Annapolis, City on the Severn: A History. JHU Press. p. 85. ISBN 978-0-8018-9659-0. 
  7. ^ "MacKubin, Florence". The International Who's Who in the World. 1912. p. 727. 
  8. ^ a b c d "Florence Mackubin, Portrait Painter". NY Times. 3 Feb 1918. 
  9. ^ a b c Clara Erskine Clement Waters (1904). Women in the Fine Arts: From the Seventh Century B.C. to the Twentieth Century A.D. Houghton, Mifflin. p. 219. 
  10. ^ Charles Henry Browning (1900). Some "colonial Dames" of Royal Descent: Pedigrees Showing the Lineal Descent from Kings of Some Members of the National Society of Colonial Dames of America, and of the Order of the Crown. p. 61. 
  11. ^ a b William Hand Browne; Louis Henry Dielman (1918). Maryland Historical Magazine. Maryland Historical Society. p. 183. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Florence Mackubin at Wikimedia Commons