1902 Encyclopedia > George Chambers

George Chambers
English maritime painter
(1803-40)




GEORGE CHAMBERS, (1803-1840), a marine paiuter, born at Whitby, Yorkshire, was the son of a seaman, and for several years he pursued his father's calling. While at sea he was in the habit of sketching the different classes of vessels. His master, observing this, gratified him by cancelling his indentures, and thus set him free to follow his natural bent. Chambers then apprenticed himself to an old woman who kept a painter's shop in Whitby, and began by house-painting. He also took lessons of a drawing-master, and found a ready sale for small and cheap pictures of shipping. Coming after-wards to London, he was employed by Thomas Horner to assist in painting the great panorama of London for the Colosseum (the exhibition building in the Regent's Park, recently demolished), and he next became scene-painter at the Pavilion Theatre. In 1834 he was elected an associate, and in 1836 a full member, of the Water-colour Society. His best works represent naval battles. Two of these—the Bombardment of Algiers in 1836, and the Capture of Porto Bello—are in Greenwich Hospital. Not long before his death he was introduced to William IV., and his professional prospects brightened; but his constitution, always frail, gave way, and brought him to an early grave. He died on the 28th October 1840. A Life of him, by John Watkins, was published in 1841.







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