Frederic Remington

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Frederic Sackrider Remington (October 4, 1861 – December 26, 1909) was an American painter, illustrator, sculptor, and writer who specialized in depictions of the American Old West, specifically concentrating on scenes from the last quarter of the 19th century in the Western United States and featuring images of cowboys, American Indians, and the U.S. Cavalry, among other figures from Western culture.

Quotes[edit]

  • I knew the railroad was coming—I saw men already swarming into the land. I knew the derby hat, the smoking chimneys, the cord binder, and the 30-day note were upon us in a restless surge. I knew the wild riders and the vacant land were about to vanish forever... and the more I considered the subject, the bigger the forever loomed. Without knowing how to do it, I began to record some facts around me, and the more I looked the more the panorama unfolded.
    • “A Few Words from Mr. Remington,” Collier’s Weekly, March 18, 1905, p. 16, reprinted in Collier’s Weekly (Jan. 10, 1910) p. 12
  • Art is a she-devil of a mistress, and if at times in earlier days she would not even stoop to my way of thinking, I have preserved and so will continue.
    • “A Few Words from Mr. Remington,” Collier’s Weekly, March 18, 1905, p. 16, reprinted in Collier’s Weekly (Jan. 10, 1910) p. 12
  • The Indians are most enlightened, for they have at least one distinct impression regarding government. They know that it never keeps it word. Any old chief will tell you that white men are all liars, and if you press him regarding it, he will prove it, and the only exception he will make is the white soldier.
    • “Indians as Irregular Cavalry,” Harper’s Weekly, (Dec. 27, 1890), as quoted in The Collected Writings of Frederic Remington, Peggy & Harold Samuels, Garden City, New York, Doubleday & Company (1979) p. 59
  • After two centuries of civil administration, with its agents, its treachery, its inefficiency, and at time its horrible corruption, where are the Indians? Such as survived the flood of white immigration are living in poverty and ignorance.
    • “Indians as Irregular Cavalry,” Harper’s Weekly, (Dec. 27, 1890), as quoted in The Collected Writings of Frederic Remington, Peggy & Harold Samuels, Garden City, New York, Doubleday & Company (1979) p. 59
  • The Northwest is dotted over with soldiers sleeping out in the snows of this winter because of this mismanagement of the Indian Bureau. With an instance of this incompetency before their eyes nearly half of the time, people in the East ought to understand, and every man who in the West come near enough to get the stench cannot but know it rottenness. It’s unchristian, it’s inhuman, it’s vile. It is the constantly recurring old story—a gross cause of mismanagement. And then the army is called in to be responsible—to protect the lives of the settlers, and in these days to shoot down a people who have the entire sympathy of every soldier in the ranks.
    • “Indians as Irregular Cavalry,” Harper’s Weekly, (Dec. 27, 1890), as quoted in The Collected Writings of Frederic Remington, Peggy & Harold Samuels, Garden City, New York, Doubleday & Company (1979) p. 61
  • The Saxon race is not in a habit of dividing the spoils with a conquered one.
    • “Indians as Irregular Cavalry,” Harper’s Weekly, (Dec. 27, 1890), as quoted in The Collected Writings of Frederic Remington, Peggy & Harold Samuels, Garden City, New York, Doubleday & Company (1979) p. 61
  • The northern Cheyennes, after they surrendered to General Miles, irrigated and raised crops at the mouth of the Tongue River for two years, and almost immediately sank into poverty and sloth when given Interior Department rations, for which they did not have to work in order to procure.
    • “Indians as Irregular Cavalry,” Harper’s Weekly, (Dec. 27, 1890), as quoted in The Collected Writings of Frederic Remington, Peggy & Harold Samuels, Garden City, New York, Doubleday & Company, (1979) p. 62
  • In Arizona nature allures with her gorgeous color and then repells with the cruelty of her formation—waterless, barren, and desolate.
    • As quoted in The Southwest in American Literature and Art: The Rise of a Desert Aesthetic, David Warfield Teague, Tucson, AZ, University of Arizona Press (1997) p. 61, from1888 journal entry
  • Cuba is not a new-born country, peopled by wood-cutting, bear-righting, agricultural folks, who must be fresh and virtuous in order to exist. It is an old country, time worn, decayed, and debauched by thieving officials and fire and sword.
    • “Under Which King?” Collier’s Weekly, (April 8, 1899), as quoted in The Collected Writings of Frederic Remington, Peggy & Harold Samuels, Garden City, New York, Doubleday & Company (1979) p. 361
  • Physically, one is immediately impressed with the underdeveloped state of Havana and Cuba generally, and of the illimitable possibilities. The Spanish officials taxed thrift right out of the island; they took industry by the neck and throttled it. The Church charged a poor man so much to get married that they, for the most part, were compelled to forego that ceremony, and when they were dead they taxed their bones.
    • “Under Which King?” Collier’s Weekly, (April 8, 1899), as quoted in The Collected Writings of Frederic Remington, Peggy & Harold Samuels, Garden City, New York, Doubleday & Company (1979) p. 361

Quotes about Frederic Remington[edit]

  • He is, of course, one of the most typical American artists we have ever had, and he has portrayed a most characteristic and yet vanishing type of American life. The soldier, the cowboy and rancher, the Indian, the horses and the cattle of the plains, will live in his pictures and bronzes, I verily believe, for all time.
    • Theodore Roosevelt, “An Appreciation of the Art of Frederic Remington,” Pearson’s Magazine (October 1907)

External links[edit]

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