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Thomas Moran

Above Tower Falls, Yellowstone
watercolor and gouache
15 x 10 1/2 in.
Smithsonian American Art Museum, Gift of Mrs. Armistead Peter III

Tower Falls is a spectacular, 156-foot waterfall in Montana’s Yellowstone Park, where Thomas Moran accompanied a survey party led by Dr. Ferdinand V. Hayden for the United States Geological Survey in 1872. This highly finished and detailed watercolor of Tower Falls was probably created back in his studio, based on numerous field sketches. Moran’s paintings and watercolors were instrumental in the establishment of Yellowstone National Park.