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 Henry Arthur McArdle  (1836 - 1908)

About: Henry Arthur McArdle


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Lived/Active: Texas      Known for: historical genre, portrait, landscape

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BIOGRAPHY for Henry McArdle
1836 (Belfast, Ireland)
1908 (San Antonio, Texas)


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historical genre, portrait, landscape

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Henry Arthur McArdle is most often noted for his historical paintings of Texas, and appropriately, his paintings, "Dawn at the Alamo" and "The Battle of San Jacinto" hang in the Texas state capitol. In addition to his historical work, McArdle painted many portraits of public figures.

He was born in Belfast, Ireland in 1836, and studied art there. Following the death of his parents, McArdle immigrated to Baltimore with his maiden aunt in 1851. He enrolled in the Maryland Institute for the Promotion of the Mechanic Arts and graduated in 1860. McArdle served the Confederacy during the Civil War as a draftsman in the Corps of Engineers and a designer of gunboats. He was also a topographer for General Robert E Lee.

After the war, he settled in Independence, Texas in 1867. In 1875, he was a founding member and student of the Art Students League of New York.

McArdle began his teaching career at Baylor University in 1881, and at the Baylor Female College. During this period he began painting portraits of public figures and moved to San Antonio in 1889 to continue painting portraits. He became a student of Texas history and began painting important historical paintings including the ones that hang in the State Capitol. Those paintings were purchased for $25,000. by the state from the heirs of the artist, who had died financially strapped.

McArdle died in San Antonio in 1908. McArdle exhibited at the Texas State Fair, Houston (1875), and at the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts.

John and Deborah Powers, "Texas Painters, Sculptors, and Graphic Artists"
Peter Falk, "Who Was Who in American Art"

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