Watercolor, 10.5 x 7 inches / Signed and dated E.L. Poole, 1913 lower right
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Earl Lincoln Poole was born in 1891 in Haddonfleld, New Jersey and attended Central Catholic High School in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Poole remained in Philadelphia and studied at University of Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, and the Pennsylvania School of Industrial Art (now the Philadelphia Museum of Art). In addition, he studied at the Philadelphia Academy of Natural Sciences (now part of Drexel University). He was also the recipient of an honorary Doctor of Science degree from Franklin and Marshall College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Poole traveled widely and visited Guatemala and Honduras to study flowers, plants, animals, and bird life. He is best known for his exquisite renderings of wild birds. In 1915 he accepted a position at the Reading Boys High School at the behest of Levi Mengel, Director of the Reading Public Museum. In 1920, Poole transferred to the Reading Public Museum, while still serving as Supervisor of Art at Reading Boy's High School. In 1925 Poole was named Assistant Director of the museum and then Director in 1938. His skill as a nature painter is highlighted in “The Bird Studies at Old Cape May” (Stone, 1937), which he illustrated. He was author/co-author and illustrator of “Bird Life of Berks County, Pennsylvania” (1932); “A Half Century of Bird Life in Berks County, Pennsylvania” (1947); “The Birds of Colombia, (1964, Meyer, Poole, and De Schauensee); “Pennsylvania Birds—an Annotated List (1964); “A Guide to the Birds of South America” (1971, De Schauensee, Meyer and Poole); “Birds of Colorado”; “Winter Nesting of the Barn Owl”; “The Birds of Virginia; and “The Birds of the Philippines”. Poole was a member of the Philadelphia Sketch Club and exhibited there and at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts.