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John James

Audubon

John James Audubon was born in Haiti in 1785. Most of his childhood was spent in France, where he first took interest in birds and drawing. He came to the U.S. at age 18, and made many moves throughout his adulthood around what was largely then “frontier,” including time in Ste. Genevieve, Missouri in 1811. His various business pursuits, which included importing whiskey from Kentucky to Missouri for sale to the mining community, seemed mainly to be a means to fund his real passion, which was studying and documenting birds. He first connected with a master printer for The Birds of America around 1826 before the series was even complete, and directly collaborated on publication of his artwork through several editions and for the remainder of his life.