Williams, John Insco – American Artist

image courtesy of James D. Julia Auctions, Inc.

p4A ItemID A062167
image courtesy of James D. Julia Auctions, Inc.

p4A ItemID A062168
image courtesy of Historic Americana Auctions.

p4A ItemID B149092
John Insco Williams oil on canvas painting, seascape showing waves along California coastline

p4A ItemID E8937466

John Insco Williams (1813-1873)

John Insco Williams (1813-1873), was born in Greene County, Ohio, and raised on a farm in Wayne County, Indiana. He apprenticed to a house and carriage painter in Richmond, but quit and spent several years as a laborer in Montgomery County, Ohio. He then worked as an itinerant painter in Ohio and Indiana before heading to Philadelphia to study under Thomas Sully and Russell Smith. In 1841, he opened a studio in Cincinnati. He produced some wildly popular panoramas, in one instance using 4,000 square yards of canvas, that in the 1850s that made him quite wealthy. The Civil War inspired a 10,000 square foot panorama entitled Williams’ Great Painting of the American Rebellion that traveled throughout the East, accompanied by music and lectures. He exhibited at the PAFA in 1864, and the Cincinnati Associated Artists in 1866. He died in Dayton in 1869.

Information courtesy of Cowan’s Auctions Inc.

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