John Mix Stanley was born in Canandaigua, NY on January 17, 1814. He began his career as a portrait painter in the Northeast but by 1842 had been thoroughly engulfed by a consuming interest in the American Indian. Unfortunately, most of his Indian paintings, with the years of careful research that went into them, were destroyed in the Smithsonian Institution fire of 1865.
Although most of his time was spent in the West, he was apparently in the White Mountains for a short time in the 1860s. In 1865, Stanley, with his wife and two children, visited the White Mountains of New Hampshire. There is a known photograph of the four of them on the summit of Mount Washington. During the years 1865 to 1867, Stanley produced a series of landscape paintings in his studio of White Mountain subjects, presumably from sketches made during his 1865 late summer visit.
Stanley exhibited at the North American Indian Gallery in Cincinnati in 1845, and the Apollo Rooms in Louisville, KY in 1846, and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 1858.
Stanley died in Detroit, MI on April 10, 1872.