Clement Drew (1806-1889)

Clement Drew (1806-1889)

Clement Drew is best known as a painter of stormy seascapes of the New England coastline, but was a jack of all trades, including librarian, art dealer, framer, photographer, realtor and avid abolitionist. He was born in Kingston, Massachusetts, and lived and worked in Boston from 1827 to 1873. His travels in search of marine subjects took him from the south shore of his home state to the rocky shores of Maine and the Grand Banks of Newfoundland. Drew passed away in Roxbury, Massachusetts.

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Drew’s son George H., born in 1833, became an artist himself, and the two worked together in a photography business in 1863 and operated a shop for artists’ materials. Several of Clement Drew’s paintings of ships and lighthouses were made into lithographs during the 1850s and 1860s, and today several museums have examples of his work in their permanent collections, including the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Massachusetts, the Mariners’ Museum in Newport News, Virginia, and the Butler Institute of American Art in Youngstown, Ohio. 

References: Falk, Who Was Who in American Art; Groce and Wallace; Boston City Directory.

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