Outland was born and raised in Lebanon, Ohio where her family were some of the earliest settlers, She was introduced to art and history at an early age by her mother and elementary school teachers. Those early influences set Outland on a life long path exploring the beauty of nature and local history. She was that child who always needed to know “why?”
Graduating from Lebanon High School, Outland credits Louise Stiles, Agnes Marts and Billie Runyan and Rosemary and Gene Chute for influencing her. She attended Miami University, Oxford and majored in Fine Art and Art Education. Additional coursework included: Business, Economics, Law, Real Estate and Interior Design.
Art became Outland's hobby over the years she worked in retail and business, but returned to creating again in 1996, studying with Elmer Ruff of Cincinnati. She retired from teaching at the Warren County JFS in 2014 and returned to volunteering with the Warren County Historical Society, at Harmon Museum, in the Art Curatorial and Conservation department in 2018.
Charity Steddon McCurty
During the 1800s, people often died young. Unfortunately, Charity McCurty’s death occurred when she was in her prime. This painting was actually painted postmortem, not an unusual practice at the time. Mame Mote is thought to be either the sister-in-law or daughter of Marcus Mote.
When the Beedle Log Cabin was being reconstructed next to the Armstrong Conference Center, Sylvia Outland created this pen sketch for WCHS to use for marketing. It's a beautiful representation of Outland's wide variety of mastered mediums.
Dr. William Morris Charters (1806-1883) hired his friend, Marcus Mote, to paint his portrait, When he completed, Mote posthumously painted Dr. Charters' recently deceased twin children as well; free of charge. Dr. Charters remained distraught over the loss of his children and, soon after, packed up his family and practice and moved west.
Twins, John Milton Charters and William Morris Charters (1846 - 1848), were the sons of Dr. William Morris Charters and Cynthia Dutton Seely (1806 - 1883 and 1809 - 1860 respectively). The boys died a week apart. In 1849. When Quaker artist, Marcus Mote was hired to paint a portrait of Dr. William Morris Charters, Mote posthumously painted the twins as well. Dr. Charters was so distraught over the loss of his children that he, soon after, packed up his family and practice and moved west.
This work, featured on Antiques Roadshow, entered our collection on March 14th, 2021. The Betsy H. Maple Trust, represented by Karri Hamilton daughter of Betsy Maple, (second wife of William Chester “Chet” Maple), personally delivered the painting the family gifted to the Harmon Museum.