Earl Thatcher. “Hasbrouck, Sullivan Co. N.Y.”
1904. Water color. Signed. 11 ½ x 15 1/4. Some marginal damage to corners. Else, clean and attractive.
Earl Thatcher (1871-1929) grew up in Philadelphia, where his father was a salesman. He exhibited a water color called simply “A Sketch” at both the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) and the Art Club of Philadelphia in 1892. Thatcher relocated to New York, where he married French-born Madeline Cotté. He reportedly worked as an illustrator for magazines such as Harper’s, once bringing suit on an unknown matter against Progress Magazine Publishing Company in 1908. Living in Brooklyn in 1900, by 1902 Thatcher had relocated his art studio to Scranton, PA, where he was recorded as one of many providers of “incidentals” to the Bureau of Police in 1915. By 1920 the Thatchers had returned permanently to Philadelphia, residing on S. 6th Street (East Washington Square). He is likely the Earl Thatcher who provided a map for University of Pennsylvania professor Morris Jastrow’s 1917 book The War and the Bagdad Railway about the then-current World War. In 1930, PAFA exhibited a work of his titled “Madame T,” perhaps a portrait of the artist’s wife.
This 1904 genre scene shows a rural family in southeastern New York State’s Sullivan County, not far from Scranton, PA, where the artist was residing at the time.