Carleton Theodore Chapman was born on September 18, 1860, in New London, Ohio and he died on February 12, 1925, in New York City, New York. He married Aurelie M. Reynaud, on November 8, 1911, Bronxville, New York.
Chapman was raised under the auspices of the Baptist faith, but his scholastic education was received mainly in Oberlin schools where the family moved around 1873. As a boy he spent summers in his uncle's shipyard in Maine.
He moved to New York and studied at the Art Student's League and at the National Academy. He also gained experience at the Academie Julian in Paris, the South Kensingston Museum, and the National Gallery in London. Chapman was a student of marine architecture and he studied naval memorabilia, the sea and its atmosphere and nearly all of his work is near or on the sea.
Chapman was commissioned by the US Naval Academy to paint pictures of Naval activities during the War of 1812. His illustrations appear in a book by James Barnes Naval Actions of the War of 1812. There are many books written with his illustrations. His paintings are in the Naval Academy Museum, Duquesne Club of Pittsburgh, Larchmont Yacht Club, Atlantic Yacht Club and Lotus Club all of New York and the Ellicott Club of Buffalo. Several museums have a collection of his paintings – the de Young Memorial Museum, San Francisco, CA, Slater Memorial Museum, Norwich, CT, Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, MA, The Brooklyn Museum of Art, Brooklyn, NY, New York Historical Society, New York, NY, The Toledo Museum of Art, Toledo, OH. J. Pierpont Morgan, Esq of New York City bought several of his paintings. His paintings are loaned by the Naval Academy and are displayed in government office buildings.
Chapman received many awards and commendations for his paintings. Among his awards was a Silver Medal presented at Boston, 1892; bronze medals at The World's Colombian Exposition at Chicago, 1893; Atlanta Exposition, 1894; Pan-American Exposition at Buffalo, 1901 and Charleston Exposition in 1902. He was a Member of the Jury of Selection for the United States Section, Department of Art, and also of the International Jury of Award for the Universal Exposition in St. Louis, 1904. He was an Associate of the National Academy and a member of the American Water Color Society, the New York Water Color Club, New York Etching Club, Artists' Fund Society and the Century Association. His last exhibition (posthumously) was at the Toledo Museum of Art in 1925.
During the Spanish American War, Chapman was sent by Harper's Magazine Weekly of New York with the U.S. Navy to Cuba and witnessed nearly all the important engagements of the Spanish American War. He supplied their pictorial publication with sketches of the war. Carlton was with Admiral Sampson's Fleet from the beginning to the end of the war in the Caribbean. He witnessed the destruction of Cervera's Fleet. He also worked for Scribner's Magazine illustrating Captain Mahan's articles on famous U.S. Naval battles.
Carlton T. Chapman died of heart disease at his residence, 58 West Fifty-seventh Street. He left a widow, formerly Aurelie M. Reynaud of Mount Vernon, who he married in 1911. Before Aurelie died, she sold some of his paintings and also donated some to the Naval Academy in Annapolis. The artist was buried in Grove Street Cemetery, New London, Ohio, a famous illustrator and easel painter who adored the sea and its diversified coasts.
Columbia - 1903
- Carlton Chapman - Artist Biography for Carlton Chapman - askART
- Carleton T. Chapman - Pierce Galleries