National Society of Colonial Dames of
America in Tennessee
















Christ Church Cathedral - Nashville, Tennessee


Portrait #1552
Subject/Title:
Polk, Bishop Leonidas
Artist:Hankins, Cornelius
Date Created:ca. 1905
Owner/Location:Christ Church Cathedral
900 Broadway
Nashville, TN. 37203
Frame Dimensions:39 x 34 1/2
Image Dimensions:30 x 25
Materials/Media:oil on canvas
Date Documented:30 July 2008
Condition:Excellent

Description:Bust-length of older man facing three-quarter right. He has a white stand-up-collared shirt under what appears to be a double-breasted uniform jacket, also with a stand-up-collar. His greying curly hair is parted on his right, and a lock of hair falls over his left forehead. He has long sideburns and wears a stern expression.
History of Work:Katherine, daughter of Bishop Polk, and her husband Col. W. D. Gale, lived in Nashville after the Civil War. They were members of Christ Church. In 1963, Katherine's grandson W. Dudley Gale, donated his entire estate to Christ Church, including this portrait. Noted on the canvas "Hankins, Cornelius After J.R.S." Hankins copied the original portrait by James Stuart, now in the collection of Sewanee - The University of the South. Restored by Cumberland Art Conservation, Nashville, in 2007.
Notes:Leonidas Polk, born in Raleigh, North Carolina, on April 10, 1806. He graduated from West Point 1827 and was ordained an Episcopal priest in 1833. Polk was elected, in 1841, the first Bishop of Louisiana. With Bishop Otey of Tennessee, Polk was instrumental in founding The University of the South. While serving in the Confederate Army, General Polk, often called "The Fighting Bishop," was killed at Pine Mountain, Georgia, on June 14, 1864. First buried in Augusta, Georgia, he and his wife were re-interred in 1945 to Christ Church Cathedral, New Orleans.

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