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 Charles Bowman Hutchins  (1889 - 1955)

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Lived/Active: Colorado      Known for: birds in habitat, landscape, wildlife

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Ad Code: 4
Charles Bowman Hutchins
from Auction House Records.
Mountain Pines
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
From Colorado, Charles Hutchins specialized in landscape and wildlife paintings and was a member of the Boulder Art Association and the American Museum of Natural History.
The following is from Graham Hutchins, Port Angeles, Washington

Charles Bowman Hutchins, the artist who painted Mountain Pines, was my father. He was born in Seattle, Washington Territory, on October 3, 1889. He died of a brain hemorrhage near Snoqualmie, Washington in 1955. He was married to Helen Emily Owen of San Antonio, Texas, [my mother] and had 4 children by her: my brother Charles B. Hutchins Jr., of Fruitland, WA; my sister Carolyn Miller, of Bar Harbor, Maine, and my twin-sister Grace Lynch, of Wenatchee, WA.

Charles Bowman Hutchins was known as "The Bird Man of America". He gave lectures on Birds in schools, colleges, universities, garden clubs, Audubon Societies, churches, and at such popular gatherings as the Chautauqua Assemblies, at Chautauqua Lake, New York and in Boulder, Colorado. [where my sisters and I were born]. He lectured in every state of the Union during his long career and also served as the a Ranger-Naturalist at Old Faithful and at Fishing Bridge in Yellowstone National Park for the NPS in the late 30's.

He often lectured during other summers at Estes Park, Colorado. While lecturing at the Bok Singing Tower at Lake Wales, Florida he traveled all over that state in support of the establishment of the Everglades National Park. He was also instrumental in the movement to have state legislatures adopt such environmental appreciation symbols as state birds...e.g., The Cactus Wren as the state bird of Arizona.

Charles Bowman Hutchins graduated from Lincoln High School in Seattle, and studied art at the Cornish School of Art in Seattle. He was fascinated by birds as a boy and learned to imitate their calls and whistled like the birds he lectured on at the many programs he gave all over the land. He would do chalk drawings on newsprint of the birds during his lectures and give them away to members of the audience. [Children especially loved this!]

He also showed his "charts" at these lectures, which he painted in oils on flexible canvass and carried with him rolled up in large bundles. Most of these "charts" depicted the birds he was lecturing on in their natural setting and habitat. He was a conservationist at heart and today would have been regarded as an 'environmentalist' before the term was coined.

Besides his chalk drawings and "charts" he also did a number of scenic paintings of various parts of the country and especially of the Rocky Mountains and his own Pacific Northwest, and of the Yellowstone.

Charles Bowman Hutchins came from a gifted family of artists, architects, and engineers. His brother. Sheldon F. Hutchins, was a noted Pacific Northwest artist who worked in oils and did many scenic pictures of this part of the country. Another brother, Fred Hutchins, studied architecture in Europe and was a gifted water color artist, especially of the American Southwest. Another brother, Chester, was an architectural engineer who studied at Georgia Tech and lived his life in the southeast part of the country. Their father was a noted Seattle contractor who built many of the schools and other public buildings in that city around the turn of the century.

Charles Bowman Hutchins was also a poet, and published 7 editions of poems entitled "Whiff O' the West". Later editions of this book were illustrated with pen and ink drawings by a Loveland, Colorado artist, Edmund J. Sawyer. Our mother, Helen Hutchins, was a gifted musician and would often travel with her husband on his lecture tours and accompany his programs with Irish Harp music and vocal numbers, some of which she composed.

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