CORBIN, General Henry Clark

Three-quarter length.

Present Whereabouts Unknown.

KRAUSHAAR ART GALLERIES, 260, Fifth Avenue (between 28th & 29th Streets), New York, January 5 – 19, 1901, as Adjutant-General Corbin.
PAN-AMERICAN EXPOSITION, Buffalo, New York, September – October, 1901, in the War Department Exhibit, as Major-General Corbin.

New York Commercial Advertiser, January 9, 1901 (described but not named)
New York Sun, January 13, 1901
Post, Denver, Colorado, January 20, 1901
Art Interchange, February 1901

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The sitter, who born on September 15, 1842, was an officer in the United States Army who served as Adjutant-General of the United States Army from 1898 to 1904. He was born in Monroe Township, Ohio and was teaching school and studying law when the American Civil War broke out. Corbin volunteered as an infantryman in July 1862 and by November 1863 he was commissioned as a major. He rose to be colonel, and participated in the Battle of Decatur and the Battle of Nasville. He left the service in March 1866. In May 1866 he joined another infantry regiment, but Corbin was appointed to the official staff of President Rutherford Hayes, serving at the White House from 1877 to 1881. He was attending Hayes’ successor, James A. Garfield when Garfield was shot in 1881, and was present at his death. He became a major in the Adjutant General’s Department in June 1880, serving in the Department of the South and the Department of the Missouri. He was promoted to lieutentat colonel in June 1889, serving in the Department of Arizona, the Adjutant General’s Office in Washington, and the Department of the East. In May 1896 he returned to the Adjutant General’s Department in Washington as a colonel. He was elevated to Adjutant General of the U. S. Army with the rank of brigadier general in February 1898. He was promoted to a major general in June 1900. He took command of the newly created Division of the Atlantic in January 1904, then was given command of the Division of the Philippines in November 1904. He took command of the Northern Division in February 1906 and was promoted again in April 1906. He retired in September 1906, and died on September 8, 1909 in Washington DC, and is is buried in Arlington National Cemetery.

According to a letter dated May 11, 1899 (artist’s papers) Corbin wrote ‘…I beg to inform you that the President [William McKinley] and myself will give you a sitting whenever you may desire…’  Corbin’s must have been finished some time in 1900. Letters from Captain. P. C. Harris, 9th U.S. Infantry, the representative for the War Department’s Exhibit at the Pan-American Exposition at Buffalo, New York, in September/October 1901 wrote to Muller-Ury requesting permission to borrow this portrait on July 10, 1901, and on September 7, 1901 acknowledged its receipt:

‘Dear Sir:

Your portrait of General Corbin has been received. I have given it the best available location in the War Department space, and it has already attracted a great deal of attention. I thank you very much for the loan of this fine portrait. I will see that the best of care is taken of it, and that it is returned in good condition at the close of the exposition.

                         Very respectfully, P. C. Harris.’ 

On November 6, 1901, the portrait was returned by express to the artist, and Harris wrote informing Muller-Ury, saying that: ‘This portrait proved to be an object of great interest to the large number of persons who visited the exhibit during the time it was on exhibition.’ [All three letters are in the artist’s papers.]