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POLK Charles Peale (1767-1822) Nationality : American

Polk was born in Maryland, to Elizabeth Digby Peale and Robert Polk. At age eight or ten after being orphaned, he was sent to Philadelphia to live with his uncle and study art. He was married at eighteen and Philadelphia was his permanent residence. By the time he was in his twenties, Polk was advertising himself as a portrait artist in Baltimore newspapers. He was apparently not at all successful since he returned to Philadelphia within a matter of a couple years, advertising his services as a house and sign painter. He continued his artistic pursuits, and by 1800 he had opened exhibitions in Baltimore. In 1800, he held government office in Washington, D.C. at the National Gallery of Art.

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