unidentified sitter [possibley Sarah Wilkinson Middleton (d.1772)]
Artist: Roberts, Mary Date: ca. 1745
Born in England and immigrated to Charleston before 1735, Mary Roberts supported herself as an artist after her husband's death in 1740. Unfortunately, few or her works survive today. Roberts is one of the first known miniature painters in the American colonies and was the first artist to paint watercolor on ivory outside of Europe. Before using ivory, early American miniature painters used wood, copper, or vellum, a thin sheet of calfskin.