William Trost Richards was born in Philadelphia, the son of Quaker parents. His formal academic education ended in 1847 following his father’s death when he worked as designer and illustrator of ornamental metalwork to help support his family. Richards married writer Anna Matlack in 1856 and settled in Germantown, Pennsylvania, where he lived until 1881. He studied drawing with the German-born artist Paul Weber and traveled and sketched with William Stanley Haseltine.
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