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COLLECTION Identifier: arn00015

Charles Edward Faxon watercolors

This collection contains 39 unnumbered leaves of vascular plant watercolors. Some of the watercolors seem to be unfinished.

Dates

  • approximately 1880-1889

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is available by appointment for research. Researchers must register and provide two forms of valid photo identification. Please contact botref@oeb.harvard.edu for additional information.

Extent

0.2 linear feet (39 unnumbered leaves; boxed)

Biographical note

Charles Edward Faxon was born on January 21, 1846, to Elisha and Hannah Mann Faxon, in a part of Roxbury, Massachusetts, that later became Jamaica Plain. His interest in nature was fostered by his older brother Edwin, a naturalist. Charles was educated in public schools and at the Lawrence Scientific School at Harvard College, where he received a B.S. in civil engineering in 1867.

After college Faxon traveled to Europe for six months and worked in the family leather business for several years. In the late 1870’s Yale botanist, Daniel Cady Eaton, asked Faxon and his brothers to make collections for him. Faxon also contributed watercolor illustrations to Eaton’s “Ferns of North America,” published in two volumes in 1879 and 1880.

Faxon was instructor of botany at Harvard’s Bussey Institution from 1879 to 1884. He was appointed assistant director of the Arnold Arboretum by Charles Sprague Sargent in 1882. Faxon’s work at the Arboretum was primarily to create plates for Sargent’s publications, including the 14-volume “Silva of North America.” Faxon also managed the library and herbarium. He remained at the Arboretum until his death in Jamaica Plain on February 6, 1918.
Sources

Cattell JK. 1906. American Men of Science; a biographical directory. New York: Bowker.

Dosmann MS, Pearson LE. 2015. Charles Edward Faxon: Botanical Draftsman. Arnoldia (Jamaica Plain). 73(1):2-10.

Sargent CS. 1918. Charles Edward Faxon. Rhodora. 20(117):117-122.

Provenance

The provenance of the collection is unknown.

Related Materials

Other related material at the Botany Libraries, Harvard University Herbaria: Charles Edward Faxon papers, approximately 1860-1895 and Charles Edward Faxon watercolors of ferns, approximately 1877.
Title
Faxon, Charles Edward, 1846-1918. Charles Edward Faxon watercolors, approximately 1880-1889: A Guide.
Author
Archives, Arnold Arboretum Library, Harvard University Herbaria
Description rules
dacs
EAD ID
arn00015

Repository Details

Part of the Botany Libraries, Arnold Arboretum Library (Cambridge), Harvard University Repository

Contact:
Harvard University Herbaria
22 Divinity Ave
Cambridge MA 02138 USA
(617) 495-2366