Today in History: Henry Ossawa Tanner was Born

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Henry Ossawa Tanner

On this day June 21, 1859, Henry Ossawa Tanner was born in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia.

He was the first African-American painter to gain international acclaim with his most noteable painting, “The Banjo Lesson” which was painted in 1893.

He was the only black student at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, and became a favorite of the painter Thomas Eakins, who had recently started teaching there.

Tanner died in Paris, France, on May 25, 1937.

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