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 Ada Eldred Rigden  (1886 - 1962)

About: Ada Eldred Rigden


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Lived/Active: Arizona      Known for: desert landscape, architecture

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
An early settler in Prescott, Arizona, Ada Rigden combined the talents of painting with ranch life duties. She was born in Twin Bridges, Montana, and relocated with her family to the copper mining town of Climax, Michigan near Battle Creek.

She attended Kalamazoo Teachers College, and in 1905 moved to Arizona for her respiratory problems. From 1905 to 1906, she taught school at Kirkland and Humboldt, and then married Charles Rigden, a local rancher, and they lived the rest of their life on an 8000 acre ranch near Kirkland. She pursued her love of painting, depicting her surrounding landscape in oil and watercolor.

In the 1920s, the family lived in Prescott while the children attended school, and she studied painting and palette-knife techniques with Claire Dooner Phillips. She was active in the Prescott Monday Club, and gave lessons to the teen age Margaret Hays, who later married Rigden's son Tom. Rigden is the matriarch of three generations of women artists that includes herself, her daughter-in-law Margaret Hays Rigden, and granddaughter, Cynthia Rigden.

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