Hunter, Clementine – African-American Artist – Louisiana

Clementine Hunter (1887 to 1988)

Clementine Hunter (pronounced Clementeen) was born to Creole parents, Antoinette Adams and Janvier Reuben, in late December of 1886 or early January of 1887 at Hidden Hill Plantation near Cloutierville, Louisiana. Hunter would never learn to read or write, later saying she only had about ten days of schooling, and was put to work in the fields when she was very young. At 15, she left Hidden Hill, which [...] Click here to continue reading.

O’Sullivan, Timothy H. – Photograph

Timothy H. O’Sullivan (circa 1840 to 1882)

Timothy O’Sullivan immigrated to New York City from Ireland with his parents when he was a small child and it was there that he later found work in Mathew Brady’s photography studio. (Brady, who was afflicted with vision problems that struck when he was still a young man, depended heavily on the talent he found in recruits like O’Sullivan and Alexander Gardner.) While O’Sullivan appears to have [...] Click here to continue reading.

Tagua – definition

Tagua Nuts

Tagua nuts are the endosperm of a genus of South American palm trees that are found from Panama down through Bolivia and Peru. Tagua nuts, or more accurately, the kernels of tagua seeds, are left behind by the wildlife that feed on the palm’s fruit. The group of palms is often referred to as “tagua palms” or “ivory-nut palms,” because tagua nuts are so hard, they resemble elephant ivory. (In fact, the [...] Click here to continue reading.

Hoosier and Hoosier Cupboards

Hoosier and Hoosier Cupboards

The word “Hoosier” is one of those words whose origins are lost to time. Even The Oxford English Dictionary offers no real guidance about where the word came from. What we do know is that “Hoosier” was first documented in the mid-1820s, and within a decade, it had entered general usage. John Finley, a Hoosier himself from Richmond, write a poem titled, “The Hoosier’s Nest” that was published in 1833, [...] Click here to continue reading.

Gardner, Alexander

Alexander Gardner (1821 to 1882)

Alexander Gardner was born in Paisley, Scotland on October 17, 1821. As a young man, he was interested in socialist ideas, especially the concept of cooperatives, the creation of a business venture operated by and to serve the needs of a particular group with a common interest. After the family moved to Glasgow, Gardner apprenticed himself to a jeweler and silversmith at the age of 14. After reading about [...] Click here to continue reading.

Brady, Mathew – American Photographer

Mathew Brady (1823 to 1896)

Mathew Brady, the child of Irish immigrants, was born in upstate New York in Warren County, but details of his early life are few. Even the year of his birth is an estimate that Brady later offered. Around the age of sixteen, he moved to New York City, making his living as a department store clerk and filling out his income with a small business manufacturing jewelry cases. Photography [...] Click here to continue reading.

Barry, D.F. (David Frances Barry) – American Photographer

D.F. (David Frances) Barry, 1854 to 1934

Although one of the most prolific and successful photographers of the 19th century, little is known of D.F. Barry’s life, at least the early years. We do know that he was born in upstate New York, near Rochester, on March 6, 1954, and when he was seven, his family moved west to Wisconsin. Around the age of sixteen, he was hired for a short time to assist [...] Click here to continue reading.

Russell, Charles Marion

Charles Marion Russell (1864-1926)

Charles Russell was as famous for his personal character as he was for his artistic career. A simple and modest man, he left the Midwest to pursue a life on the frontier. While residing primarily in Montana for the remainder of his life, Russell, or “Cowboy Charlie”, went on to become the state’s favorite son and achieve great renown for his depictions of the American West.

An [...] Click here to continue reading.

Chief Sitting Bull – Sioux – Tatanka-Iyotanka

Sitting Bull, Sioux Chief (circa 1831 to 1890)

Sitting Bull, the man who would later become the Hunkpapa Sioux chief, was born in South Dakota, near the Grand River. His Lakota name was Tatanka-Iyotanka. In his thirties, he began to build his reputation as a warrior, leading war parties in Red Cloud’s War against a number of Dakota Territory forts. Although the U.S. negotiated with the Sioux in order to end the war and [...] Click here to continue reading.

James, Jesse – American Outlaw

Jesse Woodson James, American Outlaw

Courtesy of James Julia Auction Company, presented in conjunction with the sale of Jesse James’ personal Colt revolver and holster rig (p4A item # D9737835)

Jesse Woodson James was born Sept. 5, 1847 in Clay County, Missouri. He had an older brother, Frank and a sister. His father, a minister, left soon after Jesse was born to go to California to “minister” to the 49er miners. He died in [...] Click here to continue reading.

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