Marble bust of George L. Stearns by Samuel Morse prior to its restoration in 2016. This bust was commissioned in 1879 by Mary Stearns, George's widow, to place in their home on their estate in Medford, Massachusetts.
Image courtesy of the Tufts University Permanent Collection
Bronze plaque memorializing George Luther Stearns, located in the Doric Hall of the Massachusetts State House in Boston. The plaque was purchased by lawmakers under Res. 1897, ch. 72. It reads: "In Memoriam: George Luther Stearns. A merchant of Boston who illustrated in his life and character the nobility and generosity of citizenship. Giving his life and fortune for the overthrow of slavery and the preservation of free institutions. To his unresting devotion and unfailing hope, Massachusetts owes the Fifty-fourth and Fifth-fifth Regiments of colored infantry, and the federal government ten thousand troops, at a critical moment in the great war. In the darkest hour of the republic, his faith in the people never wavered. Of him Whittier wrote: 'No duty could overtax him; no need his will outrun; Or ever our lips could ask him; His hands the work had done. A man who asked not to be great; But as he served and saved the state.' Born in Medford, Massachusetts, January 8, 1809. Died April 9, 1867."
Cabinet card featuring the John Brown bust owned by Mary E. Stearns. This cabinet card was printed by Litchfield Studios in Arlington, MA. A handwritten note on the back of the card reads, "John Brown. From the Bust taken while awaiting Execution in the Virginia Prison, by order of Mrs. George L. Stearns, October 1859. This is the only marble Bust of the Martyr, at present writing - 1919 - in the world. It was only secured by the earnest entreaty of Mrs. Stearns, for whom, and his faithful friend Mr. Stearns, he cherished warm regard. E. A. Brackett, Sculptor."
Grave monument for the George L. Stearns at Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, MA. The text reads, "George Luther Stearns. The virtues of this rare man were celebrated at this death by the eloquence of Emerson, and in the poetry of Whittier. An unexampled honor, in his time he sheltered the exiled Hungarians together with John Brown. He saved Kansas to freedom. Almost alone in 1863 he organized the colored regiments, which turned the scale in favor of the Union cause. He expended a fortune in public and private benefactions." Photograph taken in August 2017.
A list of objects to be delivered to Fine Arts Express by the Tufts University Gallery in September 1998. The first two in the list are the busts of John Brown and George L. Stearns, at that point identified only as "Bust of a bearded man" and "Bust of a man."
Courtesy of the Tufts University Permanent Art Collection