Rufus Porter, an artist and inventor who lived from 1792 - 1884 and spent his boyhood years in the Bridgton, Maine area, helped to create an American culture. In his early years Porter painted small watercolor portraits from Maine to Virginia, then later moved on to landscape painting on walls of private homes throughout New England. His use of local landscapes with a vivid palette and broad, open brushstrokes was a departure from the styles and content of classical European wallpaper. Because most of his murals were unsigned, it was not until the mid 1930s that his body of work was authenticated through the publications of Jean Lipman. Today he is recognized as an icon of American art, inventor, and founder of the Scientific American magazine.