WILLIAM HAMILTON GIBSON
Three men have done more than any others to inspire our generation with the love of nature. They are Henry D. Thoreau, John Burroughs, and William Hamilton Gibson. - John Coleman Adams, 1901.
As a self-taught artist, writer, and naturalist, Gibson found inspiration for his work in the rolling hills and pastoral beauty of Litchfield County in Connecticut. He worked at his family’s investment firm until his father’s death in 1868. It was then that Gibson abandoned the failed business and began to enthusiastically devote his life to the study of nature, depicting its beauty in both word and illustration.
Gibson’s first works were illustrations published by the Frank Leslie Company and appeared in The Chimney Corner and The Boys’ and Girls’ Weekly. He soon began to provide botanical drawings for The American Agriculturalist and Appleton’s Encyclopedia. From the late 1870s he became well known as an author and illustrator of nature articles which appeared in the prominent Harper’s Weekly, Scribner’s Monthly, and Century magazines. Gibson exhibited his work at the American Watercolor Society, of which he was a member, and the Boston Art Club. He passed away at the early age of forty-six in Washington, Connecticut.