I am told that Lightfoot was a well-known artist of silhouettes from the early 1800's; but I haven't found anything to confirm. I can tell you that this piece is old. First let me supply you with some measures so that you may visualize the size of the piece: In the frame 5 1/2" top to bottom and 3 1/2" width. The paper is of course smaller: 3 1/2 x 2 1/4.
Now lets talk about the silhouette - there is no gold brush highlights(I like those). The paper has an aged patina. There is also a stain at the bottom left that appears to be the result of glue..no matter how this happened, that corner is damaged. If you were to reframe - That portion of the paper can easily be removed: You would have a smaller picture, but one without the stain. Personally the stain doesn't bother me.
Now lets talk frame. It is cracked to top left and then again bottom left of center. Everything is black as an iron skillet. The little beaded rim inside is gilded and in respectable shape considering age - that means there is some staining or dullness of the gold - but not bad. Onward to the back! There is a piece of wood that fills the inside which appears to have been hand carved to fit. The bottom left shows that originally, the wood was held in place with four brass pins. The bottom left is the only one left and the frame part is broken where the other three should be. There is a wire for hanging twisted from a frame loop which must go! That's the easy part.
If I were keeping this little piece - I would seal the back with paper and use a ribbon to hang and be done with it. But that is for you to decide if you wished to take additional steps to preserve the work.
It is a wonderful piece that deserves some TLC. To encourage adoption of this little treasure we offer free domestic shipping!
Thank you for your interest. We hope you have the time to tour Orphaned Treasures and enjoy the listings.
Silhouette -signed by Lightfoot early 1800s