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 Benjamin O'Fallon Raborg  (1871 - 1918)

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Lived/Active: California/Missouri      Known for: landscape, Indians, portrait, western

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Ad Code: 4
Benjamin O'Fallon Raborg
from Auction House Records.
Santa Monica
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
The following biography is from Charles Louis Raborg, Jr. of Forest Hill, Maryland: Charles Raborg is Historian and Conservator of the Raborg Family.

Benjamin O'Fallan Raborg was born near Sulpher Spring, Missouri in 1871, the
son of Sophia (Cooper) Raborg Simpson and Franklin Raborg who was born in 1841. Benjamin's grandfather was also a Franklin Raborg who was born in Baltimore on October 16,1795. His wife Malinda (Jones) Raborg was born in 1798, and they married in Baltimore on October 14,1835. Benjamin Raborg was also the nephew of California artist Astley David Middleton Cooper who was born on December 22,1856 to Fannie Clark O'Fallon and Dr. David M. Cooper.

After the death of Benjamin's father, his mother moved to California to be with her brother that had moved there earlier. Benjamin soon followed after a short stay in Chicago. Since Benjamin and Astley were both artists, they spent a great deal of time painting together in Astley's San Francisco studio.

Most of their paintings include Indian and western scenes, landscapes, and portraits. Although Benjamin had moved to the West Coast, he still held ties with the old Raborg Family in Baltimore. Around 1895 a cousin of Benjamin's, Edward L. Raborg ( 1846-May 20,1920) had commissioned Benjamin to paint five
portraits of the Raborg Family that included Edwards grandfather Christopher Raborg Jr. (April 6,1779-February 19,1862); Edward's grandmother, (Christopher's second wife) Anna Goddard Raborg ( October 12,1783- April 21,1856). The third and fourth paintings were of Edward's father Goddard Raborg (January 18,1806-June 7,1879). The last painting was of Edward himself. Today, four out of five of the paintings still exist and are held by family members in Virginia and New Mexico.

Raborg was hit by the gate of a streetcar and died in San Francisco on February 7th, 1918. He is buried near his uncle and mother in Oak Hill Cemetery in San Jose. He never married and had no children.

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Born near Sulphur Spring, MO in 1871. Ben Raborg lived in Chicago until the death of his father. He then came to California about 1880 to live with his uncle A. D. M. Cooper. His uncle taught him to paint and the two artists shared a studio in San Jose. Varying in quality, his Indian scenes, portraits, and landscapes are similar to those by his uncle. After the earthquake and fire in 1906, many wealthy San Franciscans commissioned Raborg to do decorations and paintings for their homes. By 1913 he was living in obscurity in a small hotel in downtown San Francisco. The artist was fatally injured when hit by a cable car on Feb. 7, 1918. (Four days later on the same street, the artist Giuseppe Cadenasso was killed in an auto accident.) In: Washington State Historical Society.
Source:
Edan Hughes, "Artists in California, 1786-1940"
Artists of the American West (Doris Dawdy); Artists of the American West (Samuels); Death record; Antiques magazine, Oct. 1968; SF Chronicle, 2-7-1918 (obituary).
Nearly 20,000 biographies can be found in Artists in California 1786-1940 by Edan Hughes and is available for sale ($150). For a full book description and order information please click here.

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