Jane Pierce, Two of Diamonds
Oil on linen, 70 x 48"
©1998, Tina Mion
Jane and Franklin Pierce had three sons. One month
before Franklin’s 1853 inauguration, they lost their last one, 12-year-old
Bennie, in a train accident before their eyes. Jane believed this tragedy
to be God’s way of providing her husband more time to devote to
the Presidency. For the next 2 years, Jane refused to come down from the
second story of the White House, where she spent her days writing letters
of apology to Bennie.
Jane kept a box with locks of hair of all her dead
children. She called the locks of hair her “precious ones.”
My painting of Jane is how I imagined she might have looked — unable
to sleep, pacing the White House with her precious ones.
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