This portrait was exhibited at the Whitney Museum of Art, Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Collection, the Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute and the Flint Institute of Arts and the Illinois State Museum. It was restored by John Venuti of the Old Print Shop in New York in 1950.
The subject of the portrait, Elmer Tyler, is wearing a ruffled white shirt and black frock coat; he is turned slightly to the right.
Tyler was one of Chicago's earliest tailors. He is listed in the 1839 Chicago city directory at 101 Lake Street, between Clark and Dearborn Streets. The portrait was painted by Sheldon Peck, an artist associated with early Chicago. Born in 1797 in Vermont, Peck's career blossomed as an artist with little training while he was in Chicago. Peck painted in naive style, folk art painted in crude manners but with simple ideas. Like most other naive artists, Peck rarely signed his name to his works. However, since naive art is displayed in unique styles and tall tale characteristics, his paintings are easily recognizable. Sheldon Peck paintings are extremely rare and much sought-after by art museums.