In search of a lost master

William Sergeant KendallWilliam Sergeant Kendall (1869-1938) was a celebrated artist in his day. He studied at the prestigious Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris, was named a National Academician, and garnered a slew of gold and silver medals. He was equally gifted as a painter and sculptor. He even carved many of his own frames, including the round one you see here. Yet today, his work gathers dust in attics and languishes in the storage facilities of major museums. Who was this artist? And where are his paintings and sculptures now?

L'AllegroMy name is Anne Underwood Enslow, and I am Kendall’s great-granddaughter. His eldest daughter, Elisabeth–the girl in green in L’Allegro, the painting on the right–was my grandmother. I am currently trying to locate as many of Kendall’s works as possible for a book. If you know where any of his paintings or sculptures are, I would love to know. I have combed through archives, read the artist’s letters and journals, and found names of people who purchased his paintings 100 years ago—but where are these works today?

I know that some were ravaged in fires. Some were stolen. Some disappeared. Some were trimmed to remove his signature and were passed off as works by Mary Cassatt. I need to rescue what remains before it is too late. With your permission, I will make high quality digital photos of them.

If you have any information or questions, please email me at anne.underwood at I look forward to hearing from you. And thank you for your interest.

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2 Responses to In search of a lost master

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  2. Karen H. Krieger says:

    I am seventy-five years old, a native of Staunton, Va and a former girl scout during the 1950s. I spent several summers at Garth Newel and our troop drove out to Hot Springs in an army surplus, canvas-sided truck, borrowed from the local Boy Scout Troop, for weekends twice a year in the spring and fall, where we stayed in the Manor House (which was much more grand and beautiful than it is today.) We were given full use of the house and always chose the attic, which was full of little rooms and closets – perfect to playing hide and seek.
    One summer, our group was hiking in the woods and we came across a house, the likes of which I’d never seen. I remember there were many floor-to-ceiling glass windows. A nurse (maid) came out on the deck and invited us inside to meet Mrs. Kendall, the owner and benefactor of our beloved camp. We saw an aging woman, seated in the wheelchair, covered with a sheepskin rug (it was summer), who offered us tea and told us the house was designed by Frank Lloyd Wright! Even at the young age of eight, I knew who THAT was. To this day, I have found no evidence that Mr. Wright designed a house in Hot Springs and I’ve always wondered if I just made that up because it looked like a FLW house, or perhaps she said it was designed by a student of FLW, or was based on a FLW design.
    This memory is etched in my brain as a dear one because your ancestor was so kind to us and frankly, so elegant, I’d never experienced anyone like her up until that time. I was around 8 years old. Her house was the beginning of my love affair with wood/stone/glass houses – to this day. I would appreciate any additional information or photos of this house if you happen to have any, or perhaps you could suggest another place to search? Thank you very much.

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