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 Daniel Cody Muller  (1889 - 1977)

About: Daniel Cody Muller
 

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Lived/Active: Montana      Known for: cowboy genre, illustration, mural

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Daniel Cody Muller
from Auction House Records.
Two Ponies for Little Fawn
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This biography from the Archives of AskART:

The following was written and submitted by Thomas Sica:
 
Dan Muller was born in Choteau Montana on October 11, 1889 to Carl and Augusta Muller.  Carl Muller was a quarter-blood Piegan Blackfoot and a freelance scout in Dakota with Buffalo Bill Cody.  Dan Muller was raised on the Cross-Up Ranch.  He was influenced toward art by meeting Charles M. Russell and was discouraged by his teachers from taking formal art lessons so as to protect his personal style.  He traveled in Buffalo Bill shows in 1911-1912 while continuing to draw and paint.  In 1917 Muller rode from Canada to Mexico before settling in Elko Nevada. 

"Many of Muller's firsthand experiences in the Old West are depicted in his oils, watercolors and pastels. His work is done in a documentary style, which is punctuated with great authenticity. He was careful to portray exact detail in the clothing and gear of his subjects, as well as in the background scenes. He also had a keen knowledge of horseflesh... His paintings are owned by museums and private collectors throughout the United States, Canada, Europe and South America."
(Dorothy Harmsen, 1977, American Western Art)

In WWI he broke horses for the army and taught riding. He later opened a sign shop in Chicago and then in 1920 sold landscapes to tourists in Yellowstone Park.  In 1930 in Chicago his Western paintings started to sell and he received commissions for murals for the 1933 Chicago World's Fair.  Also in 1933 he had a short story with illustrations called Break 'Em Easy published in the premier edition of Esquire Magazine.  He returned to Nevada in 1935 and again painted for the tourist trade.  He painted murals for the "Town House" restaurant in Reno Nevada.  Mr. Muller was married in Elko in 1936.
 
Dan Muller was featured as a cover artist and short story contributor in several issues of Zane Grey's Western Magazine in the 1940-50's.  In the 1960's he contributed cover art work to Old West and Frontier Times magazines.  The October issue of Montana Magazine of Western History did an 18 page feature story on Muller which included examples of several of his paintings.
 
The artist authored four books which included illustrations: Horses in 1936, Chico and the +Up Ranch in 1938, My Life With Buffalo Bill in 1948 and Trailings of Yesteryear which was published posthumously.  He also illustrated a 1948 edition of Black Beauty by Anna Sewell and another book Gene Autry and the Thief River Outlaws by Bob Hamilton.
 
Dan Muller spent the last 40 years or so of his life living and working in Wisconsin where he had a studio.  He was a major influence on the artist Ross Stefan.  Dan Muller died near Port Washington Wisconsin in December 1976.
 
Sources:
Samuels' Encyclopedia of the American West; Peggy and Harold Samuels; Castle, a division of Book Sales Inc. publisher
Dorothy Harmsen, 1977, American Western Art
October 1966 Montana Magazine of Western History
Zane Grey's Western Magazine (several issues)
Autumn 1933 Esquire Magazine
Fall 1966 Old West Magazine
July 1967 Frontier Times magazine
Montana Post, March 1977
Social Security Death Index


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