James Earle Fraser (American, Winona, Minnesota 1876–1953 Westport, Connecticut)
18 1/2 x 14 1/2 x 12 1/2 in. (47 x 36.8 x 31.8 cm)
Gift of Carnegie Corporation, 1929
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 774
Root (1845-1937), a New York lawyer, served the United States government in many capacities, including secretary of war in President William McKinley’s cabinet, secretary of state in President Theodore Roosevelt’s cabinet, and U.S. senator from New York. He was president of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, chairman of the board of the Carnegie Institution of Washington, and chairman of the board of the Carnegie Corporation of New York. For the Metropolitan Museum, he served as a trustee from 1900 to 1937 and as first vice president from 1917 to 1931. This portrait was commissioned by the Carnegie Corporation of New York in honor of Root’s eightieth birthday. This realistic and imposing bust conveys the sitter’s intellectual powers and reflects Fraser’s adherence to his rigorous academic training.