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Fine Art/Identify Oil Painting ca. 1870


How can I go about identifying the artist of an unsigned oil
painting? I know that my family had the painting around 1870,
but I don't know whether they got it in the US or in Europe
before they came here.

I posted photos of the painting at

I removed the painting from the frame - there is no signature or
label. The canvas measures exactly 21 inches wide by 13 inches
tall. There is one small tear and a larger tear. The frame has
some obvious damage that has been gilded over.

I would like to determine an approximate value for insurance
purposes, and to decide if it is worthwile to clean and repair it.

Thank You,

Dear David, I feel the dating of your painting is quite close. The size of the canvas, and the architecture of the building leads me to the assumption that the painting is British. It has a nice poetic atmosphere to it, however the composition is rather uninspired, and repetitious. I see no hallmarks of invention that I could identify with a particular artist. I believe it was executed by a somewhat minor artist, and likely one without academic training.

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Daniel A. Hynes


Collecting, buying, selling, identifying, and caring for paintings, drawings,and watercolors (19th and early 20th century American and European). No prints, contemporary art, or works executed after 1940.


35 years as a fine art dealer, including 3 years as a gallery director. Also was art expert for Leslie Hindman's Auctioneers, and for Dunning's Auction.

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