John Thomas Peele was a landscape, portrait and genre painter.
Peele, who emigrated to America at the age of twelve, settled in Buffalo, where he began painting, and studied in New York. He worked in Albany for two years as a portrait painter, and then in New York where he was elected a member of the National Academy of Design. Returning to London around 1851, he exhibited from 1852 to 1891 at the Royal Academy, British Institution and Society of British Artists, as well as at the Royal Society of Artists in Birmingham and Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts. His genre subjects were often of children, e.g. The Children in the Wood, which was bought by Prince Albert. Patrons in America included the landscape painter Frederick Church.
In 1872 he was elected a member of the Society of British Artists, a society that appointed JW its President in 1886. In 1885 he was among those who had promised work to the July exhibition of the SBA. At this time JW promised an etching The Fish-Shop, Busy Chelsea (K.264) to the first fifty subscribers of £5.5s to the SBA ballot (#09363).
Bénézit, E., Dictionnaire des Peintres, Sculpteurs, Dessinateurs et Graveurs, 8 vols, Paris, 1956-61; Wood, Christopher, The Dictionary of Victorian Painters, Woodbridge, 1871; Johnson, J., and A. Gruetzner, The Dictionary of British Artists 1880-1940 Woodbridge, 1880.