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 Henry F. Darby  (1831 - 1897)

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Lived/Active: Massachusetts      Known for: portrait, landscape, figure

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Ad Code: 3
Henry F Darby
from Auction House Records.
Full Length Portrait of a Youong Girl
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:

Born in North Adams, Massachusetts, Darby was a self-taught portrait painter, who nevertheless received some instruction from itinerant painters. He may have painted in oils as early as 1842.  His painting of the Reverend John Atwood and His Family in the Museum of Fine Arts iin Here Darby’s style is that of a determined New England limner.

In 1847 Darby became a teacher at the South Carolina Female College in Barhamville, returning North soon thereafter, to live in New York City and Brooklyn from 1853 to 1860. During that time, he exhibited portraits at the annual exhibitions of the National Academy of Design. In 1859-60 he showed paintings of John C. Calhoun and Clay.

During a short marriage, Darby divided his time between Brooklyn, his wife’s family home in Brownsville, New York, and Washington, D.C.  His wife died in 1858, and Darby stopped painting portraits. He left his daughter in the care if his wife's family, and began studying for the ministry. in 1865 he became deacon of St. John’s Episcopal Church in Whitesboro, New York in 1865, and sailed to England in 1869, where he briefly served the Anglican Church.

By 1873 he was back in America, serving at Saint Saviour’s Church in Bridgeport, Connecticut. Darby later moved to New York City; he continued painting and exhibiting, mostly religious themes.

Sources include:
information courtesy of  Melinda Stuart.

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Around 1849 Henry F. Darby was working in Washington DC, there he made studies for life portraits of Henry Clay and John C. Calhoun, which now hang in the U.S. Capitol. There he shared a studio with Samuel Colman.

In 1857, he was working in Utica, NY, staying at Fountain Elms, where he painted portraits of the James Watson Williams family. Darby went to England, after his wife's death about 1859, where he became a clergyman of the Church of England. He returned to Utica by 1865 where he served as a minister. He visited Colman in New York in 1878, but thereafter not much is known of him.

Sources include:
Groce & Wallace, The New York Historical Society's Dictionary of Artists in America
Peter Hastings Falk (editor), Who Was Who in American Art

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