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Andre, John, Major

Date and place of birth:
2 May 1750, London
Date and place of death:
2 October 1780, Tippan, New York
(fl) 1773-1778
Known places of work:
Known techniques:
Cut paper
Known materials:


Largely recognised for his role in the military, Andre was also an amateur profilist. Included in his list of sitters, and illustrated in Jackson (Dictionary), are George Washington and Benjamin Franklin – described as being ‘rather crudely cut’. On 2 October 1780 in Tippan, New York, Andre was hanged as a spy. However, due to the intervention of the Duke of York, his remains were finally placed in a grave close to his monument at Westminster Abby in 1821.

Taken prisoner and interned in Pennsylvania after the surrender of Fort William in 1775, Andre was later exchanged and worked as aide-de-camp to General Grey in 1777. Andre then became aide to General Sir Henry Clinton and negotiated the secret correspondence between him and General Benedict Arnold. West Point Negotiations led to Andre’s arrest and death as he was tried and condemned to death as a spy.

It was during the occupation of Philadelphia in the winter of 1777, that Andre cut some of his silhouettes, others being done whilst he was on leave in England. It was also at this time when he was 27, that Andre cut a self-portrait. Other profiles, many of which are inscribed with the name of the sitters, included General Horatio Gates signed ‘Andre’ and Captain Cathcart signed ‘Andre 1778’ Other signatures include ‘A’, and ‘Major Andre’.

Additional research about Major John Andre:

Source: McKechnie (Author of, British Silhouette Artists and their Work 1760-1860)

Andre, John, Major (McKechnie Section 1)

Source: Phil Blume (Collection Administrator)

Andre, John, Major (Test data)