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James Carroll Beckwith papers, 1871-circa 1991, bulk 1875-1917

Biographical Note

James Carroll Beckwith (1852-1917) was a portrait and landscape painter in New York, New York and a member of the National Academy of Design.
James Carroll Beckwith, often referred to as Carroll Beckwith, was born in 1852 in Hannibal, Missouri. He was raised in Chicago, Illinois. After the Great Chicago Fire of 1871, Beckwith moved to New York City and studied art at the National Academy of Design until 1873, when he moved to France. In Paris, he studied at the École des Beaux-Arts and under Carolus-Duran. Painter John Singer Sargent was also one of Carolus-Duran's students and Beckwith shared a Paris studio with him until 1878.
When Beckwith returned to New York in 1878, he started teaching as a professor in the Art Students League departments of painting and drawing. He continued to teach there until 1882 and then for a second span of time from 1886 to 1887. He married Bertha Hall in 1887. Beckwith gained widespread recognition for his portraits and among his subjects are the artist William Merritt Chase and President Theodore Roosevelt. Beckwith is also known for created skillful copies of Old Masters paintings which he saw in galleries across Europe during his time abroad.
In 1894, Beckwith was elected as a member of the National Academy of Design. From 1910 to roughly 1912, he lived in Italy and France. He then returned to New York City and had a studio at 57 West 45th Street until his death in 1917.