Herbert Adams (sculptor)
January 28, 1858|
West Concord, Vermont
|Died||May 21, 1945
New York City
Herbert Adams was born at West Concord, Vermont. In 1863, at the age of five, he moved to Fitchburg, Massachusetts, so his father could take a job at the Putnam Machine Co. His family purchased a home on 26 Chestnut Street. He attended the Fitchburg public schools, the Academy and was influenced by Fitchburg’s first Art teacher, Louise Haskell, to pursue a career in Art. He attended Mass Normal School in Boston and got teaching certificate. Herbert Adams taught Art in the Fitchburg Public schools from 1878–1882, but left Fitchburg for Paris France in 1885 to pursue his interest in sculpture. He was educated at the Massachusetts Normal Art School enrolling in 1877 at 18 years of age, and in 1885-1890 he was a pupil of Antonin Mercié in Paris.
In 1889 Rodney Wallace, James Phillips, and Henry Willis donated money for an ornamental fountain to grace the Upper Common of Fitchburg, MA and the City accepted the idea. This 26 foot in diameter granite and bronze fountain depicting two playful boys and a family of turtles was the first public commission awarded to Adams and was created in his Paris studio. This was the first, large sculpture, done in the “lost-wax” process, brought to America. During Adams lifetime he completed over 200 major public works of art, and is considered to be one of the most important American sculptors.
In 1890-1898 he was an instructor in the art school of Pratt Institute, Brooklyn, New York. He was elected into the National Academy of Design in 1898, and in 1906 was elected vice-president of the National Academy of Design, New York. Adams later served as President from 1917-1920. He experimented successfully with some polychrome busts and tinted marbles, notably in the Rabbi's Daughter (1894), and a portrait of the actress Julia Marlowe (1898). He was at his best in his portrait busts of women, the best example being the study, completed in 1887, of Miss Adeline Pond, whom he later married.
Adams died in New York City in 1945.
- 1887-1889 – Bust of Adeline Valentine Pond (Mrs. Herbert Adams), Hispanic Society of America, New York, New York. 
- 1888 – Boys and Turtles Fountain, Fitchburg, Massachusetts.
- 1894 – The Rabbi's Daughter, private collection.
- 1896-98 – Two bronze doors: Truth, Research, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. Begun by Olin Levi Warner in 1895.
- 1897 – Bust of Professor Joseph Henry, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
- 1898 – Bust of Julia Marlowe as Juliet, Museum of the City of New York, New York, New York.
- 1898 – Memorial Tablets, Massachusetts State House, Boston, Massachusetts.
- 1898-1905 – Vanderbilt Memorial bronze doors, St. Bartholomew's Church, New York, New York.
- 1899-1900 – La Jeunesse, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, New York. 
- 1899-1901 – Richard Smith (type-founder), Smith Memorial Arch, Fairmount Park, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
- 1900 – Jonathan Edwards Memorial, First Congregational Church, Northampton, Massachusetts.
- 1902 – William Ellery Channing, Boston Public Garden, Boston, Massachusetts.
- 1902-05 – Matthias William Baldwin, City Hall, Philadelphia, Philadelphia.
- 1912 – McMillan Fountain, Washington, D.C.
- 1919-23 – James Scott Memorial Fountain, Belle Isle Park, Detroit, Michigan (with Cass Gilbert).
- 1926-28 – World War Memorial, Fitchburg, Massachusetts.
- 1928 – Girl with Water Lilies, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
Bronze door, Truth (1896-98), Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
Bronze door, Research (1896-98), Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
Richard Smith (1899-1901), Smith Memorial Arch, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
William Ellery Channing (1902), Boston Public Garden.
Matthias William Baldwin (1902-05), City Hall, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Girl with Water Lilies (1928), National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.
- White, James Terry (1906). The National Cyclopaedia of American Biography. p. 511. "One of the best of these busts is that of his future wife, which was exhibited at the Chicago Exhibition in 1803."
- "Daniel C. French Resigns." New York Times. June 16, 1915; "Members of the Commission." U.S. Commission of Fine Arts. October 3, 2012. Accessed 2012-10-15.
- Thomas E. Luebke, ed., Civic Art: A Centennial History of the U.S. Commission of Fine Arts (Washington, D.C., 2013): Appendix B, p. 539.
- Boys and Turtles
- The Rabbi's Daughter
- Joseph Henry
- St. Bartholomew doors
- La Jeunesse
- Fitchburg World War Memorial
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Herbert Adams.|
|Wikisource has the text of a 1921 Collier's Encyclopedia article about Herbert Adams.|
- American National Biography, vol. 1, pp. 96–97.
- Profile of Herbert Adams 1858-1945 Sculptor, by Marilyn Gage Hyson c. 2000, pp. 9–10, 29-30, 59-60.
- This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Adams, Herbert". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.