Persis Russell Montague (1765-1851) married William Montague (1760-1839) in 1786. They settled on a farm just below the Sunderland, Massachusetts, line in Hadley and had ten children. This portrait, and the companion one of William, was probably painted in commemoration of their 50th wedding anniversary in 1836. Erastus Salisbury Field was born in Leverett, Massachusetts. He studied painting in New York with Samuel F. B. Morse in 1824. The following year he commenced working as an itinerant artist in Massachusetts, where he painted sharply delineated and colorful portraits.