Fonds MG H 13a - Elizabeth Beckwith Hazen

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Elizabeth Beckwith Hazen

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  • [186-] - [187-] (Creation)
    Hazen, Elizabeth Beckwith

Physical description

123 watercolours : 46.3 x 33.8 cm or smaller

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Biographical history

Elizabeth Marion Beckwith Hazen was born on 9 February 1839 in Fredericton, NB, to Hon. John A. Beckwith and Maria (Mary Anne) Street Berton. The family, on both sides, were descendents of pre-loyalists, loyalists, and old Quebec French, and thus arranged Elizabeth's marriage to James King Hazen of the Sudbury Hazen's, a pre-loyalist family. Elizabeth lived in Oromocto with her husband and mother-in-law, where she gave birth to her two children, Edith (Mrs. George W. Allen) in 1858, and John Douglas (later Sir John Douglas Hazen) in 1860. Soon after her son's birth, Elizabeth separated from James Hazen and moved back to Fredericton and lived with her large extended family at 750 Brunswick St.

A skilled amateur artist, Elizabeth worked in various media including watercolour, oil and crayon. She painted native wildflowers, and the late Dr. Loring W. Bailey (1839 - 1925), professor of botany at the University of New Brunswick, provided the botanical names. In the 1870s, Elizabeth showed her paintings and drawings at the Provincial Exhibition in the Amateur Fine Arts category. Elizabeth often received much praise from local judges.

Elizabeth Hazen was one of Fredericton's oldest and most distinguished citizens at the time of her death on 22 July 1935. Her most treasured possession was her collection of paintings of some 200 wildflowers of New Brunswick. The paintings are preserved at the UNB Archives and many were showcased at an exhibit on nineteenth century New Brunswick art, at the Fredericton National Exhibit Centre, 12 February - 15 March 1987.

Custodial history

The watercolours were originally received with, and described as, part of the Sir John Douglas Hazen fonds.

Scope and content

This fonds contains 123 watercolours of NB wildflowers painted by Elizabeth Beckwith Hazen. Most are dated between 1867 and 1873.

The watercolours that are stored in Box 1 (1 - 52) are loose, and mostly undated. The watercolours in Box 3 (53 - 121) are part of a book New Brunswick Wild Flowers and are loose, with some dates. Many of the watercolours were matted for exhibits. The mattes have since been removed and are stored in Box 2.

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The donor of these watercolours is unknown.


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Associated materials

See the Mary Rebecca Wilkinson fonds (MG H 199) for more wildflower watercolours from the same time period.

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