Portrait of 18th century Governor of New York

Portrait of 18th century Governor of New York

Featuring in Reeman Dansie’s February Fine Art sale is this previously unrecorded mid-18th oil portrait of Governor of New York, Charles Le Hardy (1718-1780).


Charles Le Hardy was born in Portsmouth into a notable Jersey family with a strong naval tradition. He was later known as Charles Hardy - the name was anglicized during his career when relations with France were mostly hostile. He entered the Royal Navy aged 16 and was made Lieutenant in 1737 and Captain in 1741. In 1744 he was appointed Governor of Newfoundland although it's suggested that he never set foot on the island. From 1755 he was knighted and appointed Governor of New York, this during a period of heightened tensions and rebellion in the colony and Charles didn't relish the task of quelling the spirit of independence, the weight of responsibility had driven his predecessor to suicide and he entreated the government to find him another position at sea. In 1757 he was promoted Rear Admiral of the Blue. From 1764-1768 he served as member of Parliament for Rochester and he became Governor of Greenwich Hospital in 1771. In 1779 he was made Commander-in-Chief of the Channel Fleet, a year later he died. This portrait is by family descent from the sitter and is estimated at £2,500-3,500.


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