Maria Morris Miller

Maria Morris Miller, botanical artist (b at Halifax, NS, 1813; d there 1875.) She took lessons in drawing and painting from 2 instructors in Halifax, W.H. Jones and Professor L'Estrange, then in 1830 opened a school in Halifax "to instruct young ladies in the polite and elegant accomplishment of drawing."

Encouraged by a botanist, Titus Smith, she produced 146 paintings of wildflowers of Nova Scotia. In 1840, 6 of her botanical paintings were copublished by John Snow, London, and A.W. Mackinlay, Halifax, as a series of hand-coloured lithographs, with habitat notes by Titus Smith. This first publishing venture was under the patronage of Sir Colin Campbell, lieutenant-governor of Nova Scotia. Further publications were issued in 1853 and 1866 and a more ambitious title, "Wild Flowers of British North America," was issued in 1867, but none of these was commercially successful. A collection of her flower paintings was shown at the Paris Exposition of 1867.

Miller was the first professional woman artist in Nova Scotia and the publication of her botanical paintings as lithographs by a London publisher gave her work significance. The Nova Scotia Museum of Natural History in Halifax holds a large collection of her paintings and lithographs.