This biography from the archives of AskART.com.
The following biography is contributed by Scott Plimpton, great, great nephew of the artist.
Charles Franklin Pierce was born on April 26th, 1844 in Sharon, New Hampshire to John A. and Phila W. Pierce. He was the third of six children who were raised in the nearby rural community of Peterborough. His early years were spent working on the family farm where the pastoral environment and a multitude of livestock made a deep impression on the future artist. Many of the works of art he would create later on in his life would stem from his familiarity with the farming way of life in the mid 1800s. Cows were one of his favorite subjects.
In the early 1860s his creative energies started to emerge and the drudgery of farm work was certainly no outlet for them, so in 1864 he decided to move to Boston to attend art school. Over the next few years he developed his skills at school and in the latter 1860s took his sketchbooks and went to England, Scotland and Wales to sketch the countryside there. This was his first of two prolonged stays in Europe during his lifetime and he honed his craft through his acute attention to detail.
The Early 1870s found Pierce back in Boston where he was a leader in the Boston Art Club and as the country celebrated the centennial of its founding, Pierce married his first wife Luena Wilder of Peterborough who was also an artist of note. They both returned to Europe in the late 1870s and sketched and painted and toured for over a year. They continued to paint both European and New England scenes in a Boston studio and at an estate in Peterborough and after 30 years of marriage Luena died in 1906.
Pierce continued to paint and draw and in 1912, he married Sarah Katherine Plimpton of Massachusetts. They lived on his estate in Peterborough and in Brookline Massachusetts where he died in 1920 on March 5th. In his studio upon his death were found numerous unfinished canvases, which attest to his liveliness right up to his final breath at the age of 67.