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Margaret Fernie Norris Eaton

 (1871 - 1953)
Margaret Fernie Norris Eaton was active/lived in New York, New Jersey / England.  Margaret Eaton is known for genre, illustration, printmaking, pyrography.

Margaret Fernie Norris Eaton

Biography from the Archives of askART

Margaret Fernie Eaton (1871-1953), painter, illustrator, and worker in Applied Arts, was born Margaret Fernie in Leamington, England, on April 22, 1871, the daughter of Benjamin J. Fernie and Katharine (Smeeton) Fernie.  In 1896, she married fellow artist Hugh McDougal Eaton (1865-1924), and shared a studio known as Valhall with him, located at 339 Halsey Street in Brooklyn, New York.  In 1929, she married the Reverend Frederic W. Norris.

Margaret studied under Kenyon Cox at the Art Students League* of New York (where she was a member); and under J. B. Whittaker and N. P. Snyder at the Adelphl Art School (Brooklyn), where she received medals.

Beginning in 1898, she began exhibiting her art at such locations as the Society of American Artists* (N. Y.); the National Academy of Design* (N. Y.); the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts* (Phila.); the Art Club of Erie (Erie, PA.); the New York Water Color Club* (where she was also a member); and in Chicago.

Margaret Eaton first worked as a freelance artist painting general subjects in oil and water colors. Adelaide Tukey (1833-1910), an elderly woman from Brooklyn Heights, known locally as the "little Old Lady of the Cashmere Shawl," can be seen as the model in several of her early paintings.

Later Margaret established her professional reputation primarily as a pyrographic* multimedia artist, working with her husband, Hugh Eaton.  It is not known just how much pyrography Margaret Eaton did. It seems that the couple made their living primarily from the sale of bookplates and stationery items in their own business, and both were prolific illustrators.

Many of their illustrations can be viewed in the pages of The American Magazine also known as Frank Leslie's Popular Monthly. The Eatons had a vacation home in Montville, New Jersey they called Fircone.

Margaret Fernie Eaton died January 18, 1953.

Submitted by:
V. Bianco, researcher whose source were labels on the back of Eaton paintings and other sales information including one of the Trans-Mississippi and International Exposition in Omaha, Nebraska, 1898.

Jennifer Dix, who made clarifications about the married names of the artist

* For more in-depth information about these terms and others, see Glossary

Biography from the Archives of askART
The following information, submitted by Jennifer Dix, is from Who's Who in New York, 1907

Eaton, Margaret Fernie: Artist, publisher; b. Lemington, England, 1871; daughter of Benjamin James and Elizabeth Kate (Smeeton) Fernie.

Art education obtained at Art Students' League, NY City, and Adelphi Academy; obtained
several medals

Married in Brooklyn, 1896, Hugh McD. Eaton.

Contributor to current exhibitions of the import art centres of the U.S.; for a time did free lance illustrations for several publications; now engaged with husband in designing and publishing artistic productions at Valhall studio, Brooklyn;

Paints by preference the intimate phases of homely life, and also has a strong feeling for the decorative.

Art Students' League,
New York Water Color Club
Brooklyn Art Association

Address Valhall Studio, 339 Halsey St., Brooklyn, NY.

** If you discover credit omissions or have additional information to add, please let us know at

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About  Margaret Fernie Norris Eaton

Born:  1871 - Leamington, England
Died:   1953
Known for:  genre, illustration, printmaking, pyrography