Sunday, April 20, 2014

George Henry Story - American Artist (1835-1922)

George Henry Story - Self Portrait 1902 - Gift to Metropolitan Museum of Art by Mrs. George Henry Story 1906

George Henry Story. Born Fair Haven, New Haven Conn. January 22, 1835, son of James Story, a sea captain and Clarissa Barnes Story. 

Died November 24, 1922, the Hubert Co-op Apartments 230 West 59th Street New York City.

Started his career apprenticed as a wood carver for three years 1849-1852 to a Mr. Northrop. Studied art under Charles Hines 1852-1855.  Then studied art in Europe for one year.

Set up a portrait studio in rented space in a corner of the photographer M.B. Brady’s business space in Washington DC in 1860 and 1861. Was subsequently asked as a favor by Brady’s assistant to help pose president-elect Abraham Lincoln for a photograph. 

From there he gained access to White House for several days to sit in on Lincoln at work to make pencil sketches which later were worked into his famous series of Lincoln portraits over the years, some 12 or so in total, one of which is now in the Oval Office, West Wing of the White House. He also painted a portrait of Lincoln's Secretary of Treasury Salmon P. Chase.

Abraham Lincoln by George Henry Story

Married Eunice Berry Emerson Kimball June 5, 1856 in New Haven Conn.. Eunice, born June 9, 1835, daughter of Peter Kimball, a carriage maker in Norway Maine and Betsey Emerson, first cousin of Ralph Waldo Emerson. Died Jan 14, 1908.

- Eunice was sister to a whole family of brothers, carriage makers including C.P. Kimball of Chicago and Hannibal Ingalls Kimball, the “recreator of Atlanta” in post-civil war Georgia.

- Father of adopted son Paul Story Kimball born January 28, 1872 in Newtown Mass., a nephew of wife Eunice and original child of George Franklin Kimball, a carriage maker of Boston Mass. and Lucretia J. (Wright) Morton Kimball. Died June 20, 1896, aged 24. Was model for Story painting "Dutch Cavalier" and or "Cavalier" at the Wadsworth Museum in Hartford.

Exhibited at 1876 Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia received a – Gold Medal – for his showing of three paintings, “The Young Mother” (a first version, lost, as opposed to a later 1881 version at the Wadsworth), “The Young Student” (then owned by Wall Street broker financier David Groesbeck), and “Echoes of the Sea”.

Curator of Painting at Metropolitan Museum of Art NYC 1889-1906, Acting Director of same museum 1904-1905, Curator Emeritus after 1906.

Curator of Painting at Wadsworth Athenaeum Hartford Conn. 1899-1922.

Buried in Green-Wood Cemetery Brooklyn with wife Eunice and son Paul.

Story Family Plot Green-Wood Cemetery Brooklyn New York
(Photo by Bob Collins)

April 21, 2014 - Many Thanks to Bob Collins who has provided Inscription below of above stone, a presumed final statement of love by husband George Henry Story :

Green-Wood Cemetery
Section 145, Lot 29429.
----INSCRIPTION, top and front:'

This memorial was erected to perpetuate the grateful sense of pleasure I had in the conversation of an accomplished woman, a sincere friend, and an agreeable companion.