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Edward Gray


Oil on canvas portrait painting of "Edward Gray" (1776-1856), ca. 1839, attributed to Chester Harding. Gray was born in Ireland and came to the United States in 1794. He settled in Philadelphia and established himself in business as a merchant and in society. In 1812, he moved to Maryland to manage a paper mill on the Patapsco River near Ellicott City. During the War of 1812, he served as a private in the 1st Baltimore Horse Artillery, Maryland Militia, and participated in the Battles of Bladensburg and North Point. After the war, Gray continued to operate the paper mill until it was destroyed by a fire in 1820. He then acquired the land from the Philadelphia owner and built a new cotton mill at the same site, which was originally called the Patapsco Manufacturing Company. Gray helped establish the Patapsco Bank of Maryland in 1835 and later incorporated his mill as "The Gray Manufacturing Company" in 1841. He married Eliza Craig Gray (1788-1845) near Ellicott Mills and the couple had two daughters: Elizabeth Gray (1808-1889) and Martha Edwards Gray (1812-1895). The family lived between a home in Baltimore and their home near the mill, known as "Patapsco." Gray's daughter Elizabeth ultimately married John Pendleton Kennedy (1795-1870), veteran of the War of 1812, novelist, lawyer, congressman, and Secretary of the Navy (1852-1853) under President Millard Fillmore. After a long illness and complications due to asthma, Gray died in 1856 and is buried in Green Mount Cemetery. His home "Patapsco" and the mill he built was destroyed by a great flood in 1868.


circa 1839


Oil on canvas


24 x 30 inches

Object ID


Resource ID


Credit Line

Gift of Miss Coale

Digital Publisher

Digital resource provided by the Maryland Center for History and Culture


This digital image is made available here for private study, scholarship, and research. Commercial and other uses are prohibited without the permission of the Maryland Center for History and Culture. For more information, visit the MCHC’s Reproductions and Permissions web page.