The following information courtesy of Vivian F. Zoe, Director of the Slater Memorial Museum:
Alexander Hamilton Emmons (1816 - 1884) lived most of his life in Norwich, Connecticut where for a time he was viewed as the most important portrait painter. He painted Mayors, doctors, industrialists (and their families) at a time when Norwich reached the zenith of its manufacturing prowess. Emmons had been artistic in school, but found employment as a house painter. He began his artistic career in Hartford in 1843, painting miniature portraits on board after drafting the likeness of a fellow house painter. Emmons was the first established 19th century portrait painter in Norwich, followed soon after by John Denison Crocker, his junior by six years.
It was a banker named Charles Johnson who invited him to Norwich both to paint the portraits of city "worthies" and to occupy a new studio space built into the Norwich Savings Bank overlooking the Norwich Harbor on the Thames River. Mr. Johnson commissioned Emmons to paint the portraits for the soon-to-open new Otis Library around the middle of the nineteenth century (c. 1848). These portraits were later donated to the Slater Memorial Museum where they are preserved today along with many more that have been donated by descendants of the sitters.
He traveled briefly in Europe to study, but spent his life in Norwich. He is known for portraits, but painted landscapes as well, following the Hudson River style and aesthetic.