Born in Philadelphia, William Trost Richards became one of America's truly great artists. Initially a designer, he was a student of American artist Paul Weber and in 1853 embarked on a three year journey to study art in Florence, Rome, Paris, and Dusseldorf.
At first Richards was recognized for his landscapes and still lifes painted around his home in Germantown, Pennsylvania. In 1874 he began spending summers in Newport, Rhode Island which turned his focus to the marine paintings for which he is best known today. His marine works are reminiscent in quality and subject with paintings by his contemporaries Francis A. Silva and Alfred Thompson Bricher.
Exhibiting widely Richards won an overwhelming number of awards, including medals at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia and the Paris Expo. He also made frequent trips to Great Britain where he exhibited to an appreciative following of British collectors. He was elected a member of the National Academy of Design and also the American Watercolor Society.