Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library

Agnes Chamberlin: Chronology

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1833
Born on a farm near Coburg, daughter of Susanna Moodie and John Dunbar Moodie; family subsequently moved to an uncleared farm in Peterborough County

ca.1838
Family moved to Belleville

ca.1850
At age 17 married Charles Fitzgibbon, a Toronto barrister, and moved to Toronto. Had six children in next 13 years.

1863
Began to paint studies of wild flowers to illustrate a projected book by Catherine Parr Traill on Canadian flora.

1865
Death of husband, Charles Fitzgibbon.

ca.1865–68
As a money-raising venture, began to prepare a book on Canadian wild flowers, using her paintings and C.P. Traill’s text. Gathered 500 subscriptions.

1868
Canadian Wild Flowers published in subscribed edition by John Lovell, Montreal.

1869
Second subscribed edition of Canadian Wild Flowers (Montreal: J. Lovell).

Third edition of Canadian Wild Flowers (Montreal: J. Lovell; Burland, Lafricain, chromoliths.)

1870
Married Colonel Brown Chamberlin of Montreal, who became Queen’s Printer of Canada.

1875
Exhibition of paintings by the “Dominion Government” at Philadelphia Centennial Exhibition

1885
Nine full page colour plates (chromolithographs) by Chamberlin published in C.P. Traill’s Studies of Plant Life in Canada (Ottawa: A.S. Woodburn)

1886
Exhibition of paintings by Agnes Chamberlin and her daughter, Geraldine Moodie, at the Colonial Exhibition, London, England.

1895
Fourth edition of Canadian Wild Flowers (Toronto: W. Briggs)

1906
Second edition of C.P. Traill’s Studies of Plant Life in Canada (Toronto: W. Briggs, 1906) included 12 additional half-tone reproductions of paintings by Chamberlin.

ca.1907
Exhibition of Chamberlin’s paintings held by the Women’s Canadian Historical Society of Toronto in the East Hall of University College, University of Toronto.

1913
Died.

1934–5
Agnes Chamberlin’s heirs presented her paintings and copies of Canadian Wild Flowers and Studies of Plant Life in Canada to the University of Toronto. They were housed in the Botany Department.

1937
Brief exhibition of Chamberlin’s paintings at the Botany Building for the Biological Club’s Conversazione.

1966
Agnes Chamberlin collection transferred to the Rare Books and Special Collections of the University of Toronto Library.

1967
Small exhibition of Chamberlin’s watercolours at the Sigmund Samuel Library.

1972
Eleven watercolours by Chamberlin reproduced in Eustella Langdon’s Pioneer Gardens (Toronto: Holt Rinehart and Winston).

1976
Exhibition of Chamberlin watercolours at Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library, July–August.

1977
Exhibition at Royal Ontario Museum’s Canadiana Gallery: “Two Gentlewomen of Upper Canada”, June 15 to September 18, 1977. Exhibition of watercolours and drawings by Agnes Chamberlin and Anne Langton.