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“A” is for Audubon, John James (1785-1851)

“A” is for Audubon, John James (1785-1851). Artist, naturalist, ornithologist. A native of Santo Domingo, Audubon’s father sent him to America to manage his property in Pennsylvania. By 1820 he was living in Kentucky and supporting himself as an artist and taxidermist. Audubon spent the next two decades traveling in America pursuing his dream of chronicling the bird life of North America. In 1831 he traveled to Charleston to find and paint southern birds. There he befriended local naturalist the Reverend John Bachman who became a lifelong friend and associate. During the 1830s, while collecting expeditions elsewhere, Audubon made the Bachman home the center of his work in America. There he had a studio to prepare and draw specimens. The original edition of The Birds of America established John James Audubon’s reputation as America’s leading nature artist.

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Dr. Walter Edgar has two programs on South Carolina Public Radio: Walter Edgar's Journal, and South Carolina from A to Z. Dr. Edgar received his B.A. degree from Davidson College in 1965 and his Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina in 1969. After two years in the army (including a tour of duty in Vietnam), he returned to USC as a post-doctoral fellow of the National Archives, assigned to the Papers of Henry Laurens.