Robertson Kirtland Mygatt; Philadelphia Collection 74; March 2005

figure 6
fig. 6
economy of line,” others are “less capable and less pleasing.” Another critic opined that some works were praiseworthy for their delicacy, but that “in some of the smaller landscapes this delicacy and fineness of line run into prettiness and thinness.”9

Mygatt joined the Salmagundi Club in New York in 1893. Some of the most important American painters of the period were members of the club, and he exhibited there regularly until his death.10 By 1898 he was sufficiently well known to be mentioned in the New York Evening World, along with Walter Shirlaw (1838–1909) and Thomas Moran (1837–1926), as a contributor to the club’s annual exhibitions.11 Mygatt exhibited a pastel, St. Mark’s Basin, Venice, at the Art Institute of Chicago in 1895, an indication that he had recently visited Italy. He exhibited for the first time with the Society of American Artists in New York in 1896, and at some point joined the New York Watercolor Society and the Artists’ Fund Society of New York. Mygatt joined the Architectural League of New York in 1899. The following year he had a joint show with the painter Roland Rood (dates unknown)12 at H. Wunderlich & Co., New York, where Mygatt exhibited several Venetian subjects in addition to views of Ipswich, Essex, and Rowley, Massachusetts.13 His Edge of the Swamp, Ipswich, Massachusetts (location unknown), was included in the Louisiana Purchase Exposition in St. Louis in 1904, for which he was awarded a silver medal.14 Mygatt married Emily Tyers (died 1909), the daughter of an English tea merchant, in Ipswich on September 15, 1904. She was also a painter, and probably belonged to the circle of artists who lived and worked in Ipswich during the summer.15 Two years after her death Mygatt married Emily’s younger sister Margaret (died 1962); there were no children by either marriage.

A critic summarized Mygatt’s artistic development in 1905 by dismissing the etchings shown at the World’s Columbian Exposition as “crude, although promising.” He praised Edge of the Swamp as a “landscape full of bigness of conception, executed with a wealth of resource and a rich vein of fancy,” and noted that two more recent paintings possessed “the same feeling of love of nature.” The writer concluded on an optimistic note by predicting that Mygatt’s work “will soon be sought for in every important American collection.”16 The artist exhibited at the National Academy of Design in New York and the Art Club of Philadelphia in 1906. Mygatt, along with Arthur Wesley Dow (1857–1922), Henry Rodman Kenyon (1861–1926), and Francis Henry Richardson (1859–1934), took part in a three-day exhibition that was held in (next)

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