This site provides access to the papers of Rubens Peale in the Archives of American Art that were digitized in 2023, and total 750 images.
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Philadelphia born museum director and painter Rubens Peale is known for his still life paintings and was the son of artist and naturalist Charles Willson Peale.
During his twenties and thirties Peale was director of his father's museum in Philadelphia and then of the Peale Museum in Baltimore. He opened his own museum in New York in 1825 but ultimately sold his collection to P.T. Barnum in 1843.
Meanwhile, in 1837, he moved to the estate of his father-in-law, George Patterson, near Schuylkill Haven, Pennsylvania. In October 1855 he began keeping a journal and turned to still life painting as an extension of his interest in natural history. He continued learning and developing as an artist and one year before his death returned to Philadelphia to study landscape painting with Edward Moran. In the final decade of his life Peale produced 130 paintings.