Louis Lang, a painter from Waldsee, Germany, who moved to the United States in 1838, kept this diary between August 1841 and July 1846. He spent most of the period in Rome and Venice, Italy, where he commented on his artistic endeavors and other aspects of his daily life.
Collection processed and finding aid created by Richard C. Bates, September 2007, and Meg Hixon, August 2012
Scope and Content:
Louis Lang, a painter from Waldsee, Germany, who moved to the United States in 1838, kept this diary (6" x 8", 228 pages) between August 18, 1841, and July 31, 1846. He spent most of the period in Rome and Venice, Italy, where he commented on his artistic endeavors and other aspects of his daily life.
Lang began his diary just before embarking for Europe from New York in August 1841 and recorded daily entries about the weather conditions during his voyage to Bremen, Germany, which he reached in late September. He traveled from Bremen to Waldsee, Germany, where he briefly stayed with his family before continuing to Rome, where he spent most of the following five years. Many of Lang's entries from Rome recount his daily activities, which included visits to famous buildings and works of art as well as encounters with other artists, especially Americans and Germans. In addition to writing about the creation of his own paintings, Lang exhibited an interest in the techniques of other painters; for example, on December 9, 1842, he copied an Italian document concerning the sale of paints to Titian (Tiziano Vecelli; pp. 114-115). His entries occasionally describe religious traditions, such as the annual Carnevale and Easter festivities. Though based in Rome, he also took extended visits around central Italy (July-August 1842) and to Venice, where he lived and painted between May and November 1843.
Lang's final entries, composed between June and July 1846, concern his return trip to North America, which he reached around July 31, 1846, the final date recorded in the diary. Though Lang wrote fairly regularly during his time in Europe, his entries became less frequent after early 1844.
Biographical / Historical:
Louis Lang was born in Waldsee, Germany, on February 29, 1814. After studying art in Stuttgart, Germany, and Paris, France, he moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where he worked as a painter from 1838-1841. He left for Italy in August 1841 and lived primarily in Rome until returning to the United States in July 1846. After his arrival, he settled in New York, where he spent much of the rest of his life (except for about seven years in Rome, 1872-1879). Louis Lang died on May 8, 1893.
1993. M-2921.4 .
Cataloging funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC). This collection has been processed according to minimal processing procedures and may be revised, expanded, or updated in the future.
Rules or Conventions:
Finding aid prepared using Describing Archives: A Content Standard (DACS)
Additional Descriptive Data:
"Lang, Louis." The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans. Rossiter Johnson and John Howard Brown, eds. Volume VI. Boston: The Biographical Society, 1904.
Click on terms below to find any related finding aids on this site.