Institute Unveils Sculpture in Philadelphia

May 15, 2010

John Jay Portrait On Exhibit at Carpenters' Hall 

Philadelphia, Penn. - The John Jay Institute unveiled its latest fine art acquisition at a private reception at the historic Powell House in Philadelphia earlier this month. With gifts from its alumni, the Institute acquired renowned artist Elizabeth Gordan Chandler's bronze portraiture bust earlier this year.  Originally commissioned by the U.S. Congress in 1964, federal funding for the art was cut before the piece was completed, and it stayed in Mrs. Chandler's estate until her death in 2006. A Chandler family friend sought the Institute's help in acquiring the piece and finding a suitable home for the original casting that had never been on public display until now. Two secondary castings are in the permanent collection at Columbia University and Pace Law School. This piece was originally intended for the Lawyers Club of the U.S. Supreme Court.

In an elegant ceremony at Philadelphia's histroic Powell House, a sizable crowd enjoyed brief lectures about John Jay's work in America's birthplace. The Rev. Dr. Peter Lillback, President of Providence Forum and Westminster Theological Seminary, and Mr. Walter Stahr, Esq., John Jay biographer, offered insights about Jay's life and work. Present for the occassion were the Institute's Board of Governors, city leaders and several directors and members of the Carpenters' Company. The Carpenters' Company maintains Carpenters' Hall, the historic  landmark in  Philadelphia which was the site of the First Continental Congress in 1774 and where Jay entered national politics as a delegate of New York. The Jay bust will be a featured exhibit for several months at the Carpenters' Hall where more than 150,000 tourist visit every year.

John Jay was one of the great architects of American liberty. As an author of the Federalist Papers, he played a critical role in winning ratification of the Constitution. As a leading diplomat, he helped to secure the place of the United States in the community of nations. As the first Chief Justice of the United States, he set an example of judicial probity. I'm delighted that Alan Crippen has named his new institute in honor of this exemplary American statesman. In his devotion to our nation's founding ideals, and to their propagation today, Crippen himself is a worthy heir to the tradition of Chief Justice Jay. I have no doubt that the John Jay Institute will help many of our most gifted young people more fully to understand and appreciate "the blessings of liberty" bequeathed to us by America's founding fathers."
Robert P. George, J.D., D.Phil.
McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence and Director of the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions, Princeton University