“Of unblemished character, dignified yet courteous in manner and address, with social talents of high order, he represented not alone the [National] Academy [of the Arts] but the profession with distinguished success.,”  So said the president of the organization after the death of his predecessor Daniel Huntington on April 18, 1906. Huntington was born nearly 200 years ago in New York on October 14, 1816, into an old New England family. He painted historical and inspirational works, landscapes and over a 1,000 portraits, including presidents and first ladies. In the tradition of his ancestor John Trumbull’s presidents and first ladies, he created an enormous (87 x 108¼ inches) commemoration of the trans-Atlantic telegraph cable, Atlantic Cable Projectors (Scroll down for image and key). Among the prominent faces he recorded were Samuel F. B. Morse, another Academy president.
During his long tenure as leader of the National Academy of Arts, Huntington preserved the staid respectability of the once pioneering organization against the onslaught of new artistic ideas. Magnifying his influence on the culture of the Gilded Age was his presidency of the Century Association, vice-presidency of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and trusteeship of the organization that would become the New York Public Library. Enormously popular in his time, much of his work has faded in memory. Some of his paintings today seem lifeless and conservative, others, too romantic, while still others strike a balance with the contemporary.
Current scholarship appears to ignore Huntington, the latest is:
Wendy Greenhouse, “Daniel Huntington and the Ideal of Christian Art” published in Winterthur Portfolio in 1996.
 From President’s Address, National Academy of the Arts annual meeting, May 9, 1906 in “Daniel Huntington,” Artists and Architects, National Academy Museum, http://www.nationalacademy.org/collections/artists/detail/695/