Jasper Francis Cropsey was born on Staten Island, New York in 1823. While training as an architect, the young Cropsey received watercolor lessons from the British landscape painter Edward Maury, and his success with the medium encouraged him to graduate to oils. At the age of twenty he exhibited work at the National Academy of Design, and soon set up a studio on Greenwood Lake, the inspiration for many of his picturesque compositions. His first trip abroad was on his honeymoon in 1847. In Europe, he was able to practice what he had preached two years earlier in an address presented to the New York Art Union: “[Let the artist go view] that solemn grandeur that pervades the air, at evening, the unimaginable effects of light and shadow, and the great harmony of color existing everywhere”.