Casius Marcellus Coolidge

( September 18, 1844 — January 24, 1934 )


Casius Marcellus Coolidge was an American artist, mainly known for his series of paintings Dogs Playing Poker. Known as "Cash" or "Kash" in his family, he often signed his work in the 19th century with the latter spelling, sometimes spelling out his entire name, for comic effect, as Kash Koolidge. Coolidge was born in Antwerp, New York to abolitionist Quaker farmers, and was raised in Philadelphia, New York. He had little formal training as an artist.

After leaving the family farm in the early 1860s, Coolidge had many careers. Between 1868 and 1872 he worked as a druggist and sign painter, founded a bank and a newspaper, then moved from Antwerp, New York, to Rochester, where he started painting dogs in human situations.

Artist. Coolidge was a drugstore owner, painter, bank owner and inventor. He painted the famous Dogs Playing Poker, started the first bank in Antwerp, New York along with invented carnival "cut-outs," wood props with painted figures on them that you can stick your face through. Coolidge married Gertrude Kimmell in 1909 at the age of sixty-four, and the following year they had a daughter