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Name: Frank Earle Schoonover
Dates: (1877 - 1972)
Nationality: American
Biography: Frank E. Schoonover was one of the major representatives of the American “Golden Age of Illustration.” He was born in Oxford, New Jersey, and attended the Model School in Trenton. He studied art at the Drexel Institute with the famous illustrator Howard Pyle (1853–1911) from 1896 to 1897. The following two summers he attended Pyle’s summer art school at Chadds Ford. Schoonover settled in Wilmington, Delaware, in 1899 and embarked on a long and successful career as a commercial artist.

The first story that Schoonover wrote and illustrated was published by Scribner’s Magazine in 1905, the year he joined the Society of Illustrators. He was a founder of the Wilmington Society of the Fine Arts and remained an active member of the organization throughout his life. He exhibited at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 1913 and joined the Fellowship of the Pennsylvania Academy the following year. He was a co-founder of Wilmington Sketch Club in 1925, organized the School of Illustration for the John Herron Art Institute of Indianapolis, Indiana, in 1931, and started his own art school in Wilmington in 1942. Schoonover was especially noted for his illustrations of American Indians, cowboys, and pirates that appeared in popular magazines such as Scribner’s, Harper’s, Century, Colliers, and McClures. He also illustrated classics such as Robinson Crusoe, Gulliver’s Travels, and Grimm’s Fairy Tales. Schoonover died in Wilmington.1


1. Cortlandt Schoonover, Frank Schoonover: Illustrator of the Northern American Frontier (New York: Watson-Guptil Publications, 1976).

copyright © 2019 Schwarz Gallery
Highlighted Work: Frank Earle Schoonover (Beach Haven, New Jersey)
Beach Haven, New Jersey
Other works: Frank Earle Schoonover (Decorative Initial Letter)
Decorative Initial Letter

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