Considered one of the most important American sculptors, Cyrus E. Dallin was the first sculptor to depict American Indian subjects in "naturalistic, sympathetic, and heroic forms," (1). Other subjects favored by the artist included historical figures, allegorical and mythological figures, and family members and neighbors. The museum collection includes sculptures and reliefs, coins, medals, and paintings by Cyrus Dallin, spanning the artist's lifetime, as well as personal items, photographs, letters, and other archival materials (1).


  • The Cyrus Dallin Art Museum (image from Yelp)
    The Cyrus Dallin Art Museum (image from Yelp)
  • Cyrus Dallin (image from the Cyrus Dallin Art Museum)
    Cyrus Dallin (image from the Cyrus Dallin Art Museum)
  • "Appeal to the Great Spirit" (image from the Cyrus Dallin Art Museum)
    "Appeal to the Great Spirit" (image from the Cyrus Dallin Art Museum)
  • Bust of Julia Ward Howe, abolitionist and proponent of women's rights (image from the Cyrus Dallin Art Museum)
    Bust of Julia Ward Howe, abolitionist and proponent of women's rights (image from the Cyrus Dallin Art Museum)
  • "Lethe" or "Oblivion" (image from the Cyrus Dallin Art Museum)
    "Lethe" or "Oblivion" (image from the Cyrus Dallin Art Museum)
  • John Townsend Trowbridge, Dallin's neighbor (image from the Cyrus Dallin Art Museum)
    John Townsend Trowbridge, Dallin's neighbor (image from the Cyrus Dallin Art Museum)

Cyrus E. Dallin
Born in Utah in 1861, Cyrus E. Dallin grew up near the Ute Indian community. As a child, many of his friends were Ute. With them, he learned archery, played, and sculpted miniature animals from clay. Though Dallin aspired to becoming a sculptor, his father disapproved, and put Dallin to work in a local silver mine. When his crew encountered a layer of clay, 19-year-old Cyrus sculpted two heads, and his co-workers, impressed by his speed and skill, sent the busts to the Salt Lake City state fair. There, they caught the attention of wealthy miner C.H. Blanchard, who spoke with Dallin's father and funded Cyrus's formal art training under Truman Bartlett of Boston. Dallin rode his first train East in 1880, in the company of a group of Crow chiefs and warriors (1; 2).

In Boston, Dallin worked in a terra cotta factory while studying with Bartlett for two years, then opened his own studio. During this time, he began his statue of Paul Revere, which would take 58 years to complete. In 1889, he moved to Paris to study at the Académie Julian with Henri Chapu. When Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show visited Paris that year, Dallin sketched the Native American participants. He used these studies for a series of four Native American equestrian statues, the last of which (Appeal to the Great Spirit) he finished in Boston in 1908. Cyrus married writer Vittoria Colonna Murray in 1891, with whom he had three sons. The family moved permanently to Arlington, Massachusetts in 1900. In addition to sculpting, Dallin taught at the Massachusetts Normal Art School from 1900-1941, as well as acting as a member of the town planning board and a trustee of Robbins Library and Symmes Hospital. He even once ran for the Massachusetts Legislature. Cyrus Dallin died at age 82 in 1944 (1; 2).

The Cyrus E. Dallin Art Museum

The museum collection includes sculptures and reliefs, coins, medals, and paintings by Cyrus Dallin, spanning the artist's lifetime, as well as personal items, photographs, letters, and other archival materials. Dallin's subjects include American Indians, historical figures, family members and neighbors, and mythological figures. The museum was established in 1995, after a restoration and conservation program in the 1980s-90s began for Dallin's works. It officially opened in 1998, located in the historic Jefferson Cutter House. The museum holds an annual Summer Soiree event, and offers public tours, private group tours, school programs, and lectures (1). The Jefferson Cutter House, where the museum is located, was built in 1830 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places (3).


1. The Cyrus E. Dallin Art Museum. Official website. Accessed August 25, 2018. http://dallin.org.
2. Smithsonian American Art Museum. "Cyrus E. Dallin." Accessed August 25, 2018. https://americanart.si.edu/artist/cyrus-e-dallin-1103.
3. Laskowski, Nicole. "Photo Gallery: Jefferson Cutter House hits milestone." December 4, 2009. Accessed August 25, 2018. http://www.wickedlocal.com/x1758550556/Jefferson-Cutter-House-hits-milestone.