Cogdell, John S. (John Stevens), 1778-1847

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Charleston, South Carolina sculptor, painter, and attorney. John Stevens (Stephano) Cogdell served in the South Carolina House of Representatives and in various civil posts. Cogdell was president of the Bank of South Carolina from 1832 until his death in 1847. The son of George Cogdell and Mary Ann Elizabeth Stevens, Cogdell married Maria Gilchrist in 1806. In 1800, for the sake of his health, Cogdell embarked on a voyage to the Mediterranean with his brother Richard. During this trip, while in Italy, Cogdell developed his interest in painting and sculpture.

From the description of John Stevens Cogdell notebook, 1816-1829. (The South Carolina Historical Society). WorldCat record id: 32141392

Known during his lifetime as a painter and sculptor, John S. Cogdell was a lawyer by profession. Born near Charleston, S.C. on Sept. 19, 1778, he studied law with William Johnson and was admitted to the South Carolina Bar in 1799. A trip to Italy in 1800 stimulated his interest in drawing and painting. While he dreamed of becoming an artist, he was unable to support himself and returned to the practice of law. Cogdell married Maria Gilchrest in 1806. In 1810, he began the first of four terms as a member of the South Carolina House of Representatives. In 1818, he was appointed comptroller general of South Carolina and from 1832 until his death in 1847, he served as president of the Bank of South Carolina.

Throughout his career, Cogdell managed to find time to be active in painting and modeling with clay. He made frequent trips to Philadelphia, New York, and Boston, where he came in contact with other artists and art patrons. His talent in art elicited encouragement from prominent artists of the day, including Washington Allston and Gilbert Stuart. Cogdell's works were exhibited at the Boston Athenaeum, the National Academy of Design, the Charleston Library Society, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. He was instrumental in the formation of the Academy of Art in Charleston.

From the description of Diaries and letter books, 1808-1841. (Winterthur Library). WorldCat record id: 84666373

Role Title Holding Repository
Place Name Admin Code Country
Boston (Mass.)
South Carolina--Charleston
Philadelphia (Pa.)
South Carolina
New Jersey
New York (State)
Charleston (S.C.)
South Carolina--Charleston
Art criticism
Sculpture, American
Artists' writings
Models (Clay, plaster, etc.)
Painting, American
Artists' tool
Artists' materials--Formulae


Birth 1778

Death 1847



Ark ID: w6bg3662

SNAC ID: 14028949