About Catherine Maitland (Conner)
The sitter was born Catherine Connor, second daughter of Daniel Connor of Ballybricken, County Cork, and Orme Square, London. She married Frederick Lewis Maitland, grandson of the sixth Earl of Lauderdale, in April 1804. The couple’s only child died in infancy. Maitland held various naval commands with distinction. He was captain of HMS Bellerophon during the surrender of Napoleon on board the ship, July 15, 1815; from 1832 to 1837 he was admiral superintendent of the Portsmouth dockyard; in 1837 he was appointed commander in chief in the East Indies and China; and he died at sea off Bombay in 1839. In 1816 the admiral bought from his mother the estate of Lindores, Fife, which had been in her family for centuries; he spent several years improving the property and building a manor house with prize money from the Napoleonic Wars. His wife died at Lindores in 1865.
Lady Maitland is said to have sat for this portrait about 1817. It was engraved in mezzotint by Norman Hirst. The figure and the costume, with the exception of the shawl, are very well preserved, but the darks in the background are severely abraded.