Cole's Circle


Bartlett, William Henry (1809-54)

English artist who traveled to the United States in 1836 to create drawings of American scenes for the volume American Scenery, or Land, Lake, and River Illustrations of Transatlantic Nature, published in 1840 and considered one of the most widely influential books of landscape views in the nineteenth century. Bartlett sketched many of the same views as Thomas Cole, such as The Caaterskill Falls from Below (c.1830s).

Bartow, Maria (1813-84)

Cole's wife and the mother of his five children. Cole met Maria at Cedar Grove, where she lived with her uncle, John A. (Sandy) Thomson. They were married in the Main House at Cedar Grove in Catskill in 1836. Maria bore: Theodore (Theddy), Mary, Emily, Elizabeth (who died in infancy) and Thomas Cole II (born seven months after his father's death). She is depicted in Cole, Portrait of the Artist's Wife (1836-48).

Bayless, William Henry (c. 1820-?)

Thomas Cole's nephew, an Ohio-born architect who studied under Cole's patron Ithiel Town and Andrew Jackson Davis. Cole became Bayless's legal guardian in 1835, and Bayless drew up Cole's designs for the Ohio State House competition in 1838. Their relationship became strained soon afterwards, when the two men joined together in an unfortunate business deal that cost Cole a great deal of money.

Bryant, William Cullen (1794-1878)

American journalist and poet, editor/owner of The New York Evening Post, and frequent contributor to The Knickerbocker magazine. Both Bryant and Cole came to New York City in 1825, meeting at the Bread and Cheese Club, where they began a lifelong friendship with fellow artist Asher B. Durand. Bryant, like James Fenimore Cooper, sought to create a uniquely American style of literature, although he was equally entranced by the antiquities of Europe and often gave lectures on Greek and Roman mythology at the National Academy of Design. Bryant is perhaps best known for "Thanatopsis," a poem that explores themes of mortality, similar to those addressed by Cole in his work. Bryant gave Cole's funeral oration at the National Academy following the artist's death in 1848.