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Elbridge Ayer Burbank

Biography

Born in Illinois, E.A. Burbank attended the Chicago Art Academy and began working as an illustrator for the Northwest magazine of the Northern Pacific Railway when, for the first time, he was able to see the Rockies, Montana, Idaho, and Washington. Returning to Chicago, he traveled on to Europe to study in Munich, where he met Joseph Henry Sharp and William R. Leigh. In 1895, his uncle commissioned Burbank to paint portraits of the great Indian leaders of the time. Starting in Oklahoma, he traveled throughout the West, exhibiting his portraits for the first time in Philadelphia. They created a sensation, and he received great recognition for his work. However, he continued his constant travel and painting, living for periods in California, New Mexico, and Arizona.