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The Cover
October 10, 2001

The Architect's Dream

Author Affiliations

The Cover Section Editor: M. Therese Southgate, MD, Senior Contributing Editor.

JAMA. 2001;286(14):1681. doi:10.1001/jama.286.14.1681

He was born at the very beginning of the nineteenth century in smoke-choked Lancashire, the last but one of the seven children of a not-too-successful English entrepreneur, James Cole, and his wife Mary Cole. When he died, prematurely at age 47, he was the much beloved painter of the American wilderness, a poet in the tradition of William Cullen Bryant, and a literary moralist in the tradition of Ralph Waldo Emerson. His name was Thomas Cole (1801-1848), and though he himself had no pupils save the American landscape painter Frederick Church (JAMA cover, September 25, 1987), he became the founder of what is today known as the Hudson River School of Painting. He and his followers approached the natural landscape with reverence and awe, seeing it as the edifice designed by the Great Architect, the author of life and beauty and unity.