Artist. The son of a stone-cutter, he studied carving at the Royal Institute of Arts in Edinburgh, Scotland and also in Paris, France and in London, England where he later worked on the carving of the Albert Memorial. In 1868 he went to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and studied at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts with Thomas Eakins. In 1873 he began a 20-year project to design and execute sculptural decorations for Philadelphia's new City Hall. This is his most significant work, and the elaborate statues and panels of statesmen and early settlers form perhaps the most ambitious decorative ideas ever executed for a building by a single sculptor in the USA. The bronze statue of William Penn (over 11 m high), placed on top of City Hall in 1894, is a well-known landmark in Philadelphia and was until the 1980s the highest point in the city. In 1875 he won the competition for the colossal bronze statue of William Penn.
Bio by: Shock