Seth Eastman

(1808-1875)

Seth Eastman, born in 1808, was both a painter and avid military man. He studied at the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, graduating in 1829. He served as an Army officer for 4 years after graduating and again in 1855 in Texas. Eastman was also a worked in the office of the Quartermaster General in Washington D.C. Eastman worked as an assistant teacher of drawing at West Point from 1833-40, where he published the "Treasie on Topographical Drawing". In 1850, he gained recognition for producing 300 illustrations that were published in a six volume series about the life of the American Indian. His sketches were mostly of the Dakota and Chippewa Indians. Eastman was commissioned by Congress to paint a series of American Indian scenes and Western Forts for the Capitol Building. This work consumed the rest of his life. Eastman died in 1875.