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Charles Drew Cahoon (American 1861 – 1951)

U.S.S. Constitution

Oil on canvas, 14.5 x 23.5 inches / signed lower right

Cahoon, born in Harwich, Massachusetts, as a child copied drawings by his father, a sea captain and amateur artist. Cahoon spent time at sea himself and made sketches of his observations. Interested in photography, his early career was spent in Boston re-touching photographs. In 1900 Cahoon became a full-time painter and maintained a studio in Boston where he was quite successful. He was a prolific painter, producing and estimated 3,000 works, most of which are Cape Cod landscapes and seascapes.

His earlier paintings were somewhat Impressionist in execution; however, his later works were executed with more representational realism, using mellow tones and soft lighting effects. Some of his early works included copies of Gilbert Stuart’s paintings of Martha and George Washington. Cahoon survived the stock market crash of 1929, but, his career never recovered to the level it had been before the financial disaster. His life and works are documented in the book, “He Painted Cape Cod”, by Barbara Sykes McCready (1994).

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