Thomas Patten (1686–1736)

Image credit: Warrington Museum & Art Gallery

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This full-length portrait depicts Thomas Patten wearing a peruke, and dressed in jacket and gaiters. He is seated beside an ornate side table, and his right hand resting on disordered documents. The Patten family were merchants who dealt with a wide range of commodities including tobacco, sugar and tea, and dominated the industrial and social history of Warrington from the turn of the seventeenth century to the late nineteenth century. Thomas Patten's father, also called Thomas Patten, realised the importance of the River Mersey in using Warrington as a key distribution point for inland trade, and was responsible for making it navigable from Runcorn to Bank Quay. This enabled copper to be brought by boat from Ireland, Cornwall and Anglesey right to the family's smelting works at Bank Quay where, amongst other things, it was used to produce copper bangles that were traded for slaves in Africa and great copper vessels that were used to boil sugar and distil rum in the West Indies.

Warrington Museum & Art Gallery



Thomas Patten (1686–1736)




oil on canvas


H 193 x W 120 cm

Accession number

WAGMG : 1973.138

Acquisition method

purchased, 1973

Work type



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Warrington Museum & Art Gallery

Museum Street, Cultural Quarter, Warrington, Cheshire WA1 1JB England

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