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Edward Hicks was an American folk art painter and a prestigious minister of the Society of Friends. He was born in 1780 in Langhorne, Pennsylvania, to a family who became financially destitute during the Revolution. His mother passed away when Hicks was barely a year old, leaving him to be raised by a family of Quakers. At 13, he was apprenticed out as a coachman and painter into his adopted family's business which began his training as an artist. In 1801, he moved to Milford, Pennsylvania to work under another coachman and painter. He married Sarah Worstall, a childhood friend, and eventually had four children. He began attending Quaker meetings again, eventually becoming a minister himself. He started the first of many ministry tours in 1811, and drew large crowds, establishing himself as a very prominent minister of the Quaker religion. At this time, he was also painting signs, furniture, coaches and more though his religion was the main focus.
Hick’s paintings reflected mostly the Quaker’s theme of peace and brotherly love throughout his life, painting more than sixty variations of his painting Peaceable Kingdom. Despite his full schedule as a painter, coachman and minister, Hicks also found time to instruct his cousin Thomas Hicks (1823 – 1890) and Martin Johnson Heade (1819 –1904) before his death in 1849.
To learn more: http://www.nga.gov/content/ngaweb/Collection/artist-info.1396.html?artobj_artistId=1396&pageNumber=1
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