Quaker Sculptor from Ohio

Celebrating Eli Harvey's Birthday

September 7, 2010


Eli Harvey, who was to become an internationally known Quaker painter and sculptor, was born in Clinton County on September 26, 1860. This was a time when the Society of Friends considered the arts “a vanity and a vexation of the spirit.”   His father, William Penn Harvey, allowed the young boy to educate himself through books and magazines. As he refined his art, he painted local scenes and portraits, earning the funds to enroll in the Art School of MacMicken University in Cincinnati. In 1889, he traveled to Paris and studied under the French masters. It was under the tutelage of Fremiet and Gerome that Harvey developed as an “animalier.”
Today, Harvey’s work is evidenced by the guarding lions at the entrance of many public buildings, at the Bronx Zoological Park, the life-size bronze Alaskan brown bear at Brown University, and The American Elk commissioned by the Benevolent Order of the Elks. Many sculptures remain in private collections.
On September 26, 2010, the Clinton County Historical and Genealogical Societies celebrate Eli Harvey’s 150th birthday anniversary. On this Sunday, at 2:00, Harvey ancestor, Christine Snyder, will discuss the life and works of Eli Harvey through a PowerPoint presentation. After the presentation, guided tours of the Clinton County Historical Society’s Harvey collection, the largest known assembly of his works, will be conducted.
This event will take place at the Clinton County History Center, 149 E. Locust Street in Wilmington, Ohio. There is no charge for attendance, but due to limited seating, reservations are requested. To make a reservation or for more information, contact the History Center at (937) 382-4684 or