The Boston Athenaeum to Present George Pope Morris: Defining American Culture





The Boston Athenæum will present “George Pope Morris: Defining American Culture” an exhibition of paintings, prints, photographs, letters, books, periodicals, and sheet music representing Morris’s pioneering achievements as a writer, poet, critic, journalist, and publisher. The exhibition opens Sept. 23 and runs through Dec. 5, 2009.

This exhibition will investigate the various aspects of Morris’s career and his role as a major force in cultivating American literary taste and providing venues for the works of American writers and artists. It will also place Morris in the geographical context of the Hudson River Valley where he lived and was the neighbor of writers and artists such as Washington Irving, James Kirke Paulding, and Thomas Cole.

From 1823 to 1846, George Pope Morris (1802 – 1864) was editor and publisher of the New-York Mirror, the New Mirror, the Evening Mirror, and the Home Journal, which was the journalistic ancestor of the magazine Town and Country. The Mirror was the most popular literary journal of its time, with a peak circulation by the mid 1830s of about 10,000. In his various journals, Morris published the writings of William Cullen Bryant, Lydia Maria Child, Fitz-Greene Halleck, Charles Fenno Hoffman, Washington Irving, Edgar Allan Poe, and Nathaniel Parker Willis, and even serialized the works of Charles Dickens. Morris himself was the author of dozens of critical articles, poems, and popular songs. As a friend and supporter of American artists such as Asher Durand and Thomas Cole, he played a key role in the development and promotion of the Hudson River School as the first major movement in the history of American art...


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