On Christmas night, 1776, General George Washington’s army crossed the Delaware River to launch a surprise attack on British forces at Trenton, New Jersey. His victory was a turning point in the American Revolution and became a favorite subject among later generations of painters. The fame of Emanuel Leutze’s Washington Crossing the Delaware (1851) inspired this heroic scene by genre painter George Caleb Bingham. As weary soldiers row through the icy waters, Bingham presents Washington above on horseback, an elegant ideal of masculinity and leadership.



  • Title: Washington Crossing the Delaware
  • Creator: George Caleb Bingham
  • Creator Lifespan: 1811/1879
  • Creator Nationality: American
  • Creator Gender: Male
  • Creator Death Place: Kansas City, MO
  • Creator Birth Place: Augusta County, VA
  • Date: 1856/1871
  • Provenance: Collection of the Artist; Artist's estate sale, 1879 (no. 2); Findlay's Art Store, Kansas City, Mo., 1893; Thomas Hoyle Mastin, Kansas City, Mo., and heirs, to Mrs. Thomas E. Keck, Kansas City, Mo.; Butterfield and Butterfield Auctioneers, Seattle, Wash., June 30, 1975 (lot #261); Hirschl and Adler Galleries, New York, 1976; Walter P. Chrysler, Jr., 1976; Gift of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr. in memory of Walter P. Chrysler, Sr. to The Chrysler Museum, 1983.
  • Physical Dimensions: 36 5/8 x 57 1/2 in. (93 x 146.1 cm)
  • Credit Line: Gift of Walter P. Chrysler, Jr., in honor of Walter P. Chrysler, Sr.
  • Type: Painting
  • Medium: Oil on canvas

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