1896 Admiral Farragut portrait now at museum

Two long-time Farragut Museum supporters and patrons donated an oversized color portrait of the Town’s namesake to officials last week.

Paul and Patricia DeHaan of Kalamazoo, Michigan, donated the 44-by-51-inch portrait of Admiral David Glasgow Farragut to Historic Resources coordinator Julia Barham Thursday, Jan. 5, who accepted it on behalf of the Museum.

Down through the years, the couple has twice loaned pieces from their collection to the Farragut Museum, and separately, the Museum has purchased pieces from the couple’s collection, including a Civil War Marines Corps drum, an ammunition box and an 1812 fire bucket.

“The Museum is always excited to work with Paul and Patricia, and we are very thankful for their generous donation,” said Barham, noting Farragut Museum has one of the largest private collections of Admiral Farragut artifacts in the nation.

Barham said due to its size, the portrait would be placed outside the museum’s doors.

The portrait initially was part of a street banner created for the 1896 Cincinnati Grand Army of the Republic reunion, which Paul DeHaan said he came across “20-something years ago at an Ohio Civil War Show.”

The couple had the piece restored and attached to a board, and decided to donate it to the Museum after recently downsizing from a house to a condo.

Paul said he has long collected American Civil War memorabilia, but during the last 40 years narrowed down his interests specifically to Admiral Farragut and the U.S.S. Hartford.

He and Patricia, who consider themselves snowbirds — they spend several winter months on the Gulf Shores of Alabama — happened upon Farragut by accident almost exactly 30 years ago, Paul said.

“We were on our way to visit Dolphin Island and found ourselves headed south on I-75, and saw a sign for Farragut, Tennessee,” he recalled. “On our way back, we decided to stop, and we met Linda Ford, then her husband, Eddy (Ford, then Mayor of Farragut).”