The Encyclopedia Americana (1920)/Lewis, Edmonia

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LEWIS, Edmonia, American sculptor: b. New York, 4 July 1845. She is of negro and Indian parentage. With slight instruction in sculpture she developed a talent for that art, and came into notice in 1865 through the exhibition of her first known work, a bust of Col. Robert Gould Shaw, in Boston. That year she went to Rome to study, and there she soon afterward established permanent residence. Her works include ‘The Freedwoman’; ‘The Death of Cleopatra’ (1876), exhibited at the Philadelphia Exposition; ‘The Marriage of Hiawatha’; ‘The Old Arrow-Maker and his Daughter’; ‘Asleep’; ‘Madonna with the Infant Christ,’ and many portrait busts, among them those of Lincoln, Longfellow, Sumner and John Brown. Most of her work is in Europe.