Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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ROBERTSON, Archibald, artist, born in Monymusk, near Aberdeen, Scotland, 8 May, 1765; died in New York city, 6 December, 1885. During 1782-'91 he studied and practised art in Edinburgh, Aberdeen, and London. In 1791 he came to this country, and, soon after his arrival, went to Philadelphia to deliver to General Washington a box made of wood from the oak-tree that sheltered Sir William Wallace after the battle of Falkirk. It had been committed to his charge by the Earl of Buchan. At the earl's request Washington sat to Robertson, who first painted a miniature, and then a larger portrait, for Lord Buchan. From 1792 till 1821 Robertson followed his profession as a painter and instructor in New York, working mostly in watercolors and crayons. In 1802 he assisted in the project of forming an art academy, and in 1816, on the founding of the American academy, he was elected a director. Though not an architect by profession, he furnished several plans for public buildings. He was also the author of a book on drawing.--His son, Anthony Lispenard, jurist, born in New York city, 8 June, 1808; died there. 18 December, 1868, was graduated at Columbia in 1825, studied law, was admitted to the bar, and gained a high professional reputation. He was assistant vice-chancellor in 1846-'8, surrogate of New York city in 1848, and in 1859 was elected a judge of the superior court. In 1864 he was elected for a second term, and in 1866 was chosen chief" justice by his associates. In 1867 he was a member of the State constitutional convention, and took an active part in its proceedings.--Archibald's brother, Alexander, artist, born in Monymusk, near Aberdeen, Scotland, in 1768; died in New York, 27 May, 1841, followed his brother to the United States in 1792, after having some instruction in miniature-painting from Shelly in London. He painted landscapes in water-color, and. like his brother, was well known as a teacher.
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