James Guilford Swinnerton (1875-1974)
James (Jimmy) Swinnerton was Born in Eureka, CA, on Nov. 13, 1875. Swinnerton was raised in Santa Clara and began his art studies at the San Francisco School of Design under Emil Carlsen. At 17, he was employed as a cartoonist for the San Francisco Examiner and then moved to NYC, where he continued as a cartoonist for Hearst newspapers. James Swinnerton became famous for such cartoons as “Little Jimmy,” “Canyon Kiddies,” and “Little Tiger.” Sick with tuberculosis, in 1903, he moved to Palm Springs, California to recuperate. The desert restored his health and inspired him to become a landscape painter. His early works were often signed with a large red “S.” His best works were produced in the 1920s. Swinnerton maintained a home in Palo Alto while traveling throughout the Southwest painting desert scenes. He made frequent trips to the Navajo country where Swinnerton Arch in Monument Valley is named for him. James Swinnerton died in Palm Springs on Sept. 5, 1974.
Edan Hughes, “Artists in California 1786-1940”
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