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Profile of the Day: Daniel Chester French

Have you visited the Lincoln Memorial? On this day in 1850, sculptor Daniel Chester French was born.

Image: Daniel Chester French / Wikimedia Commons, Library of Congress

French was the son of Anna Richardson and Henry Flagg French, a lawyer and the first president of the Massachusetts Agricultural College (now the University of Massachusetts Amherst). In 1867, the French family moved to Concord, Massachusetts, where they became neighbors and friends of poet Ralph Waldo Emerson and the prominent Alcott family. It was under the influence and teachings of Louisa May Alcott’s sister, Abigail May, that inspired French to pursue a career in sculpting.

Considered one of the most prolific and acclaimed American sculptors of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, French designed some of the most iconic pieces in American art. Perhaps his most famous piece is the Statue of Lincoln at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.

French died on October 7, 1931 at the age of 81.

Explore Daniel Chester French’s family tree on Geni and share how you’re connected to the prolific sculptor. 

View Daniel Chester French’s Geni Profile

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