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date: 26 September 2020

Pennell, Josephlocked

(04 July 1857–23 April 1926)
  • Patricia de Montfort

Extract

Pennell, Joseph (04 July 1857–23 April 1926), etcher, lithographer, and illustrator, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the only child of Larkin Pennell, a shipping clerk, and Rebecca A. Barton. The family came from a long line of Quaker farmers. He left the family farm for a shipping office in Philadelphia, where he spent his early years. Influenced by the work of American artists exhibited at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art during the centennial year in 1876, he made an early decision to become an illustrator, much to the disquiet of his parents. Having failed to gain admission to the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art, he became a clerk at the Philadelphia and Reading Coal and Iron Company and attended drawing classes in the evening at the newly founded Pennsylvania School of Industrial Art. He was an industrious student, practicing his drawing during quiet moments at the office. He also studied etching and lithography at the school, under the supervision of the architect Charles Marquedant Burns. Burns’s enlightened teaching methods led Pennell to regard him as an early mentor....

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