Charles William Jefferys

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Charles William Jefferys
Charles William Jefferys.jpg
Born (1869-08-25)August 25, 1869
Rochester, England
Died October 8, 1951(1951-10-08) (aged 82)
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Nationality Canadian

Charles William Jefferys (August 25, 1869 – October 8, 1951) was a Canadian painter, illustrator, author, and teacher best known as a historical illustrator.


Born in Rochester, England, Jefferys arrived in Toronto, Ontario (after living in Philadelphia and Hamilton, Ontario) with his family around 1880. After attending school, he apprenticed with the york, Lithography Company from 1885 to 1890. From 1889 to 1892 he worked for the Toronto Globe as an illustrator and artist. From 1893 to 1901, he worked for the New York Herald. Returning to Toronto, he became a magazine and book illustrator. Along with Ivor Lewis and other artists, Jefferys co-founded the Graphic Arts Club (later named the Canadian Society of Graphic Art), which by the 1940s became the primary artists' group in Canada. As well, from 1912 to 1939 he taught painting and drawing in the Department of Architecture at the University of Toronto.

During World War I he was commissioned by the Canadian War Records department to paint soldiers training at Camp Petawawa and Niagara. [1]

Jefferys had an intense interest in history and his reputation rests principally on his accurate and meticulous portrayal of early Canadian life. The best known collection of his historical sketches is "The Picture Gallery of Canadian History".

He was made a member of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts.[1]

A plaque in his honour quotes him, "If my work has stirred any interest in our country and its past, I am more than paid."

C. W. Jefferys Collegiate Institute, a public high school in Toronto, is named in his honour.

There are works in the art collection of the Royal Military College of Canada by Charles William Jefferys.[2]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Members since 1880". Royal Canadian Academy of Arts. Archived from the original on 26 May 2011. Retrieved 11 September 2013. 
  2. ^ Kamille Parkinson, PhD 'An Impressive Art Collection at RMCC' (Kingston, E-veritas, June 25, 2012

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