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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

April 26th

Maria Martin was not born today, she was born July 3rd, 1796 in South Carolina. I write about Maria Martin because of her connection to John James Audubon.

Today is John James Audubon's 226th birthday anniversary. Audubon created the grand folios of the Birds, the Flora, the Fauna, the insects, the beasts of North America. But he did not do it alone. In 1831, Rev. Bachman and John Audubon met in Charleston, SC. Bachman was a nature scientist. They agreed to collaborate to research and create these amazing books about the birds of North America. Rev. Bachman's sister-in-law(who lived with the Bachman family and later married the good Reverend), Maria Martin illustrated his observations of nature- the flora and fauna, she was a very talented watercolour artist.
Rev. Bachman and Audubon agreed on this collaboration of recording the nature of North America. Audubon, the artist and Bachman, the scientist....and Maria Martin the other artist. Audubon was not good at painting the flora, the landscapes, the insects....but they appear in in his watercolours. When Audubon met Maria Martin, he knew he had found another collaborator in the Bachman family. For over twenty years, Maria Martin completed Audubon's paintings. Birds of America (1831-39) and Viviparous Quadrupeds of North America (1845-48) And the publishers left her name out of title page. All the landscapes, flowers, plants, insects, and sometimes even the birds and other animals were created by Maria Martin.
And the publishers left her name out.
I read in my research of Maria Martin that the reason she is not credited is because they did not know how to include women in 1831. Science was such a new...science?