Lemuel D. Eldred (1850-1921) American
Birthplace/Origin: Fairhaven, Massachusetts
Marine painter and etcher Lemuel D. Eldred was born and raised in Fairhaven, Massachusetts near New Bedford’s whaling community. He studied for a short time at the Academie Julian in Paris (1880) and traveled throughout Europe (1883) but he claimed he was self-taught. He exhibited in Boston and at the National Academy in 1876. His work is represented in the Peabody Museum of Salem, MA, the Old Dartmouth Historical Society and the Kendall Whaling Museum.
Little is known of Lemuel D. Eldred’s life. His work typlifies the late Hudson River School painters’ moral standards and natural views which were popular after 1825 until 1875. In 1876 he moved to Boston where he kept a studio and he became a sought-after, popular marine painter.
Eldred painted realistic canvases in oil of Boston Harbor, the Maine Coast, New York and more often in the seaport town of Fairhaven, Massachusetts where he painted outdoors with his close friend, fellow marine-painter (also from Fairhaven) William Bradford (1823-1892). Although Eldred enjoyed Bradford’s Quaker beliefs and polite mannerisms, he did not join Bradford in his exploratory polar expeditions to Labrador. Similar to some of Bradford’s northern Atlantic coastline paintings, Eldred accurately and surely painted tight, realistic New England coastal villages, harbors, cliffs and beaches.