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  1. 1800
    1. 1817
      • Self Portrait by Phineas StauntonArtist Phineas Staunton is born in Wyoming, New York.
        (Note: In 1853 the artist changes the spelling of his last name from "Stanton" to “Staunton.”)
    2. 1838
      • Permission slip for the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine ArtsStaunton studies painting at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia. The Academy did not yet offer a curriculum; instead, artists made studies of items in the Academy’s collection.
    3. 1847
      • Henry Clay by Phineas StauntonAs a traveling artist, Staunton completes a portrait in New Orleans of Henry Clay of Kentucky. Contemporary newspapers report that the artist painted Clay from life.
    4. 1850
      • The United States Senate, A.D. 1850.Clay’s oration on the Compromise of 1850 takes place in the Old Senate Chamber.
    5. 1851
      • Henry Clay by Mathew Brady(December 1) Enfeebled by poor health, Clay attends the opening of the 32nd Congress, 1st session.
    6. 1852
      • Senate Journal(June 29) Clay dies of tuberculosis at age 75 in Washington, D.C.
    7. 1858
      • Proceedings of th National Convention of ArtistsStaunton attends the National Convention of Artists at the Smithsonian Institution, chaired by Rembrandt Peale. Leading American artists convened and resolved to commemorate American history and promote the display of American art in civic institutions.
    8. 1861
      • Review of the New York Troops at Washington, by General Sandford, in Presence of the President and Cabinet, July 4, 1861.Phineas Staunton serves as lieutenant colonel from 1861-62 in the 100th Regiment of New York Volunteers during the Civil War.
    9. 1865
      • Resolution No. 51(January 11) The Kentucky state legislature passes Resolution No. 51, to procure a life-size portrait of U.S. Senator Henry Clay of Kentucky. View Transcript »
    10. 1866
      • Henry Clay by William Frye(May) Phineas Staunton’s Henry Clay in the U.S. Senate arrives in Kentucky; it is submitted in competition with the entry by artist William Frye.
      • Tally to select a winner in Kentucky's portrait competition(May) The competition's selection committee votes four to three against Staunton’s portrait. View Transcript »
      • Rejection letter by Governor Bramlette of Kentucky(May 25) Governor Bramlette of Kentucky pens a rejection letter to Phineas Staunton in which he describes the favorable opinion of Clay’s son regarding Staunton’s likeness of Henry Clay. View Transcript »
    11. 1867
      • Engraving of Phineas Staunton(September) Phineas Staunton dies in Ecuador of yellow fever during a scientific expedition sponsored by the Smithsonian Institution.
      • Ashland—Homestead of Henry Clay(November) Memorial publication lists Henry Clay in the U.S. Senate as displayed at the University of Kentucky, Ashland.
    12. 1870
      • Stereograph of Henry Clay in the U.S. SenateHenry Clay in the U.S. Senate is returned to Le Roy, New York (the artist’s hometown). Staunton’s wife was a founder of Ingham University in Le Roy, and in 1870 Mrs. Staunton erected the Staunton Art Conservatory at the school as a memorial to her late husband.
  2. 1900
    1. 1901
      • Detail of Henry Clay in the U.S. SenateIngham University closes (in 1892) and the Staunton Art Conservatory contents are sold at auction in 1901. Henry Clay in the U.S. Senate is purchased for $60 and donated to the Le Roy Union Free School. Displayed in a study hall, the painting now bears telltale concentric marks from balls tossed at it by school children.
    2. 1955
      • Photograph of the Le Roy Historical SocietyWhen the Le Roy Union Free School closes, Henry Clay in the U.S. Senate is transferred to the Le Roy Historical Society. Due to the painting's immense size, it remains in storage for the next half a century.
    3. 1962
      • Letter to First Lady Jacqueline KennedyThe Le Roy Historical Society offers Henry Clay in the U.S. Senate to First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy in support of her White House refurbishing initiative. The White House declines the offer.
  3. 2000
    1. 2009
      • Installation in U.S. Capitol of Henry Clay in the U.S. Senate.Donated to the U.S. Senate Commission on Art, the restored painting is delivered to the Capitol and installed in the East Brumidi Stairway.