An online project under the direction of the CAPE ANN MUSEUM
Tuckerman, Stephen Salisbury
Stephen Salisbury Tuckerman was born in Boston, a son of Gustavus Tuckerman (1785-1860), a successful merchant, and Jane (Francis) Tuckerman. Salisbury, as he preferred to be called, lived and painted on Cape Ann during the mid-19th century and was among the many American artists who also traveled abroad to work in the late 1800s.
As a young man, Salisbury Tuckerman was introduced to the world of shipping and commerce, making several voyages to Calcutta and India on family-owned ships. His true interests and talents, however, rested in the world of art. In 1855, he married Laura Willis Bumstead whose family owned the Boston firm of Josiah F. Bumstead & Company, one of this country’s early manufacturers and importers of fine wallpaper. By 1859, Tuckerman had turned away from the world of commerce, was employed at the New England School of Design in Boston and living with his young family in Boston.
Following the death of artist Fitz Henry Lane in 1865, Salisbury Tuckerman and his family occupied Lane’s house on Duncan’s Point in Gloucester for a short period of time. A letter written by one of Tuckerman’s grandsons and preserved within the archives of the Cape Ann Museum, makes note of this fascinating bit of information: “Salisbury, with his wife and five small children, moved from Beacon Hill, Boston to Gloucester and for a few years, following the death of Fitz Hugh [sic] Lane, lived in the latter’s stone house on Duncan’s Point. There, their sixth child – a son – was born 6/4/1866.” How these living arrangements were arrived at and how, if at all, Tuckerman and Lane knew each other, remains a mystery. By 1869, Salisbury Tuckerman and his family had moved from Duncan’s Point to a newly constructed house on Bond’s Hill just off the main road which ran between Gloucester and Magnolia.