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Posts tagged as “Roosevelt”

The Not So Mysterious (not so Wooy) S. J. Woolf

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The Mysterious S. J. Wooy

A couple years ago, we casually inherited a striking picture of Theodore Roosevelt which we thought was created by an "S. J. Wooy." As the product of an Antiques Roadshow household, I googled to see if I could find any details about the picture or any stories about the artist.

I could not.

But I wrote about him anyway and I learned from some curious readers- that I was not the only one who had turned up nothing but a dead end. Then, one recent comment sent us off on one last search, just for the heck of it.

And there he was. Only he wasn't a Wooy at all. He was a Woolf. A Woolf in Wooy's handwritting, you could say ;)

Samuel Johnson Woolf

Most well known for portraits of popular celebrities and politicians of his time, which were frequently featured in The New York Times, arguably his most moving work was produced long before that.

Woolf served as a corespondent during WWI where he produced numerous pieces depicting the day to day scenes from life during the war, creating images that present the shocking as almost mundane.

S. J Woolf, not Wooey  S. J Woolf, not Wooey

S. J Woolf, not Wooey

But one day, the war ended. And Samuel Woolf found himself back in New York making a career as not only an artist, but a journalist, you could say. He frequently casually interviewed his subjects as he sketched them and the scope of his work quickly grew to encompass politicians, celebrities, authors, and more.

S. J Woolf Wooey

[caption id="attachment_1533" align="alignleft" width="181"]S. J Woolf, not Wooey Photo Via Brier Hill Gallery[/caption]

 

Not a bad story for a free picture of the second best Roosevelt.

Theodore Roosevelt and the Mysterious S. J. Wooy

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Fierce Roosevelt

The Mister picked up a fascinating Theodore Roosevelt lithograph yesterday.

Roosevelt S. J. Wooy

This lithograph is signed in pencil, by the artist, "S. J. Wooy." However, I cannot describe how frustratingly little information there is about the artist. Scratch that, how the are just enough tidbits to drive me crazy.

For example, of the few other pieces of his work I could find online, one was a similar style portrait of, of all people, Benito Mussolini  "For H. P. Fletcher, with appreciation. S. J. Wooy " dated 1924.

Um, thanks for this picture of a soon-to-be dictator?

But H. P. Fletcher was Henry Prather Fletcher, an American diplomat would serve as the American Ambassador to Italy from 1924- 1929. And- are you ready to come full circle?- Fletcher served as one of Theodore Roosevelt's Rough Riders.

Coincidence? Who knows. In the meantime, I think we should hang this over our couch, Theodore Roosevelt is the mister's favorite president. That is, as long as we can find a complimentary picture of my favorite president to round things out. I imagine it will begin to look like a Roosevelt family tree.....

S. J. Wooy Signiture

 

The pencil signature of the mysterious S. J. Wooy.

 

The paper sticker on the back which reads:

 

 

J. Assenheim & Son     J. Assenheim & Son

Importers of

Etchings, Engravings, Etc.

Fine Picture Framing

81 New Street         New York