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 Arthur Armstrong  (1798 - 1851)

About: Arthur Armstrong
 

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Lived/Active: Pennsylvania      Known for: naive portrait, landscape and history painting

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Arthur Armstrong
from Auction House Records.
portraits of a husband and wife (2)
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
ARTHUR ARMSTRONG (1798-1851)
 
Arthur Armstrong was born in 1798 in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. His family included three members of the Continental Congress and two Revolutionary War generals, including John Armstrong, Jr., who served as Secretary of War in the cabinet of James Madison.
 
In 1820, when he was 22, Arthur Armstrong opened a studio in Marietta, Pennsylvania. On September 25, 1827, he married  Harriet Groff Wentz (1808-1896) in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, and they had seven children.
 
He taught young artists,  and worked in the Ohio River Valley in 1839 and 1840. By the time of the death of the region's more established older artist, Armstrong resided in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. In 1849 his studio was in the Mechanic’s Institute in Lancaster.
 
Armstrong painted portraits, landscapes and historical scenes. On the second floor of his Lancaster studio he exhibited Hamlet and Ophelia and a large picture of the Assassination of Caesar. In times of economic downturn, he painted signs and constructed and gilded picture frames.

He died at the age of 53 on June 15, 1851. He was remembered as “a genial, kindly-hearted man.” He is buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
 
The Lancaster Historical Society owns the preponderance of his works.
 

Sources:
 
Gerdts, William H., Art Across America: the East and the Mid-Atlantic, (Abbeville Press, 1990), 268
 
Lancaster County Historical Society, Historical papers and addresses of the Lancaster County Historical Society (Lancaster, Pennsylvania), Friday, September 13, 1912 (184-191)
 
United States Census Bureau, Household of Arthur Armstrong, August 12, 1850, Lancaster South East Ward, Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Roll: M432_788; Page: 340A, lines 33-39.
 
Whitley, Edna Talbot, Kentucky Ante-Bellum Portraiture, illustrated by photos. from the collection of the National Society of the Colonial Dames of America in the Commonwealth of Kentucky, (Kentucky: 1956)  620

Submitted by Patricia Moss, Long Beach, Washington

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