The Starr Family Home portraits provide Texans with a glimpse into this important Texas family who influenced the settlement and development of Texas throughout the 19th century. After the Civil War, the Starr family was a major contributor to the growth of the railroad and cotton industries.
Twelve portraits--nine large oils on canvas and two large photographic portraits--depict the first two generations of the Starr family and date from the mid to late 19th century. Each is high quality and finely rendered; at least one of these paintings on canvas is a signed work by Henry Byrd, the renowned antebellum portrait painter. All portraits are framed in ornate gold and silver gilt Renaissance, Rococo and Greek Revival frames that complement Starr Family Home’s architectural and decorative features and furnishings. The portraits are often mentioned in family letters:
Although a prominent family, they too suffered an all too common fate - the loss of several children. Two of the portraits, Lily Starr and James Franklin Starr, Jr., are believed to have been painted posthumously. JF Starr mentions one of these sad events and the painting of the Lily Starr portrait in 1783.
The portraits, once restored, will offer a unique opportunity to bring art to children in a meaningful way and animate the Starr Family Home with images of the family that once graced its grounds.
Donate today to help restore these beautiful portraits.