The Signing of the Constitution, John Trumbull (1756-1843)

You can download paintings such as the one above at the Architect of the Capitol Website-Paintings in the Rotunda at

Constitution Day Humanities Resources

English, Literature and Art Instructors Can Find Some Interesting Resources on These Pages

Suggested Humanities Art Projects Relating to Trumbull's The Signing of the Constitution:

1.  John Trumbull (1756-1843) is one of America's most famous history painters.  Read about him at the National Gallery of Art at
National Gallery of Art
Trumbull also served in the military as an assistant to George Washington long before he was commissioned to paint this well known painting.
Using The Signing of the Constitution painting as inspiration write a letter describing this artwork to someone who has never seen it.  Describe what the painting represents and how the artist conveys this to the viewer? We, the people, are onlookers but how does the artist bring us into the painting through the groupings and placement of the figures.  Where does the viewer stand in relationship to the painting?  How does the artist make us a part of the ceremony?
Use the following guides to help you describe, analyze, and interpret this painting.
Questions to Ask as You Look at a Work of Art
Art Terms-Language of Art

2.  Print and read the Constitution

Print a copy of the Constitution from the Constitution Center

Artists, such as Norman Rockwell considered our freedoms in works of art such as the Four Freedoms.  Take a look at his Freedom of Speech and Freedom of WorshipImagine that you are commissioning an artist to create a work of art that illustrates your most cherished freedom.  Describe what you would want the artwork to look like and communicate to others and who you would select to create this work of art.