Thomas Ruckle

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Thomas Ruckle
Thomas Ruckle self-portrait.jpg
Born 1776 Blue pencil.svg
Ireland Blue pencil.svg
Died 1853 Blue pencil.svg
Occupation Painter Blue pencil.svg
  • The Battle of North Point
  • The Defense of Baltimore
The Defense of Baltimore - Assembling of the Troops, painted by Thomas Ruckle c1814 or 1815. Defense of Baltimore Assembling of the troops, September 12 184.jpg
The Defense of Baltimore - Assembling of the Troops, painted by Thomas Ruckle c1814 or 1815.
The Battle of North Point, Lithograph based on the original painting by Thomas Ruckle c1814 or 1815. Lithograph of painting byThomas Ruckle.jpg
The Battle of North Point, Lithograph based on the original painting by Thomas Ruckle c1814 or 1815.

Thomas Ruckle (17761853) [1] was a house painter and sign painter in early nineteenth-century Baltimore, Maryland, and an amateur painter. He is best known for his paintings The Battle of North Point, and The Defense of Baltimore. Ruckle was a veteran of the War of 1812, in which he had served as a corporal in the 5th Maryland Regiment of the Maryland Militia. [2]

Baltimore Largest city in Maryland

Baltimore is an independent city in the state of Maryland within the United States. Baltimore was established by the Constitution of Maryland as an independent city in 1729. With a population of 611,648 in 2017, Baltimore is the largest such independent city in the United States. As of 2017, the population of the Baltimore metropolitan area was estimated to be just under 2.808 million, making it the 20th largest metropolitan area in the country. Baltimore is located about 40 miles (60 km) northeast of Washington, D.C., making it a principal city in the Washington-Baltimore combined statistical area (CSA), the fourth-largest CSA in the nation, with a calculated 2017 population of 9,764,315.

War of 1812 32-month military conflict between the United States and the British Empire

The War of 1812 was a conflict fought between the United States, the United Kingdom, and their respective allies from June 1812 to February 1815. Historians in Britain often see it as a minor theater of the Napoleonic Wars; in the United States and Canada, it is seen as a war in its own right.

The 5th Maryland Regiment is a designation which has been held by several units over the years, not all of which necessarily share the same lineage and honors. Although the first unit to carry the "5th Maryland" designation was organized in 1776 from volunteers in rural Maryland, the designation has been most often associated with militia units in Baltimore. The "5th Maryland" designation is the officially recognized traditional designation of the 175th Infantry Regiment, Maryland Army National Guard. This entry refers to the rural 5th Maryland, whose lineage is separate and distinct from the Baltimore 5th Maryland perpetuated by the 175th Infantry Regiment.


Early life

Ruckle was born in Ireland and, having moved to Baltimore, Maryland, he became a sign painter and house painter. It is likely that he had very little, if any, formal training as an artist. [2]

Ireland Island in north-west Europe, 20th largest in world, politically divided into the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland (a part of the UK)

Ireland is an island in the North Atlantic. It is separated from Great Britain to its east by the North Channel, the Irish Sea, and St George's Channel. Ireland is the second-largest island of the British Isles, the third-largest in Europe, and the twentieth-largest on Earth.

War of 1812

Ruckle fought in the Maryland Militia during the War of 1812, and took part in the Battle of North Point, during which the Maryland Militia under General John Stricker were able to hold up the British advance long enough to secure the successful defense of Baltimore.

Maryland Army National Guard

The Maryland Army National Guard is the United States Army component of the American state of Maryland. It is headquartered at the old Fifth Regiment Armory at the intersection of North Howard Street, 29th Division Street, near Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard in Baltimore and has additional units assigned and quartered at several regional armories, bases/camps and other facilities across the state.

Battle of North Point

The Battle of North Point was an engagement in the War of 1812, fought on September 12, 1814, between Brigadier General John Stricker's Third Brigade of the Maryland State Militia and a British landing force, composed of units from the British Army, Royal Navy seamen, Colonial Marines, Royal Marines, and led by Major General Robert Ross and Rear Admiral George Cockburn. The events and result of the engagement, a part of the larger Battle of Baltimore, saw the U.S. forces retreating after having inflicted heavy casualties on the British.

John Stricker United States general

Brigadier General John Stricker (1758–1825) was a Maryland state militia officer who fought in both the American Revolutionary War in the First Maryland Regiment of the famous "Maryland Line" of the Continental Army and in the War of 1812. He commanded the Third Brigade of the Maryland state militia in the Battle of North Point on Monday, September 12, 1814, which formed a part of the larger Battle of Baltimore, along with the subsequent British naval bombardment of Fort McHenry on September 13-14th, and was a turning point in the later months of the War of 1812 and to the peace negotiators across the Atlantic Ocean for the Treaty of Ghent, in the city of Ghent then in the Austrian Netherlands,, which finally arrived at a peace treaty on Christmas Eve of December 1814, of which news finally reached America in February 1815.

Ruckle served as a Corporal [3] with the Washington Blues, a company of the 5th Maryland Regiment. [4]

Washington Blues

The Washington Blues were a company of Maryland Volunteers which saw action during the Battle of Bladensburg and the Battle of North Point, during the War of 1812.

Ruckle's paintings The Battle of North Point, and The Defense of Baltimore were painted shortly after the events they describe, and are now in the collection of the Maryland Historical Society. [2] The latter was included in an exhibit of American battle painting at the Museum of Modern Art in 1944. [5]

Maryland Historical Society non-profit organisation in the USA

The Maryland Historical Society (MdHS), founded on March 1, 1844, is the oldest cultural institution in the U.S. state of Maryland. The society "collects, preserves, and interprets objects and materials reflecting Maryland's diverse heritage". MdHS has a museum, library, holds educational programs, and publishes scholarly works on Maryland.

Museum of Modern Art Art museum in New York, N.Y.

The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) is an art museum located in Midtown Manhattan, New York City, on 53rd Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenues.

Family life

Ruckle's son Thomas Coke Ruckle (1811–1891) was also a painter. He received a formal training in fine art at the Royal Academy in London from 1839 to 1841. On his return to Maryland he became a successful portrait painter, working out of a studio in Baltimore St. He also worked as an illustrator, creating a series of scenes of the American West, and also a number of drawings for a volume titled Early History of Methodism in Maryland, published in 1866. [2]

London Capital of the United Kingdom

London is the capital and largest city of the United Kingdom. Standing on the River Thames in the south-east of England, at the head of its 50-mile (80 km) estuary leading to the North Sea, London has been a major settlement for two millennia. Londinium was founded by the Romans. The City of London, London's ancient core − an area of just 1.12 square miles (2.9 km2) and colloquially known as the Square Mile − retains boundaries that follow closely its medieval limits. The City of Westminster is also an Inner London borough holding city status. Greater London is governed by the Mayor of London and the London Assembly.

See also


  1. Manning, Martin J.; Wyatt, Clarence R. (2011). Encyclopedia of media and propaganda in wartime America. ABC-CLIO. p. 132. ISBN   9781598842272.
  2. 1 2 3 4 page on Thomas Ruckle at Retrieved Feb 17 2010 [ dead link ]
  3. p.33, The Citizen Soldiers at North Point and Fort Mchenry Retrieved July 2012
  4. Register of the Military Order of Foreign Wars of the United States, National Commandery (1900) Retrieved Jan 14 2010
  5. MOMA Retrieved 14 February 2018

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