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John Warner Barber
John Barber
American, 1798 - 1885
Biography: Artist, original printmaker, author and publisher, John Warner Barber (1798-1885) was responsible for all aspects of his books. For his Historical Collections of Connecticut, published in 1836, Barber traveled widely throughout the state, making sketches of characteristic buildings and views and obtaining information from local sources. Barber developed his rough pencil sketches into more detailed wash drawings, which were subsequently transferred directly to small blocks of boxwood, on which he engraved the designs. These wood engravings were used to illustrate his 500-page text. Born in East Windsor, Connecticut, Barber studied with the East Windsor printmaker Abner Reed, before settling in New Haven in 1823. The Graphics Collection contains approximately 350 of his drawings of Connecticut towns, including rough preliminary sketches and more highly finished studies, as well as several original woodblocks used in the printing of his illustrations.