Charles Christian NAHL (1818-1878)

Charles_Christian_Nahl_Portrait_BANCKarl (Charles) Christian Nahl, son of the engraver Friederich Nahl, and half-brother of Hugo Wilhelm Arthur Nahl,  was the first of the family to carry the flame of talent from the old world to the new. He inherited the great artistic ability of his uncle, Johann August the younger, and became celebrated as a historical, mythological, portrait and land scape painter, illustrator, engraver and lithographer.

Read Charles Nahl‘s biography in California Art Project, volume 1.

At a glance

Birth : 1818, in Cassel Germany
Death : 1878, in San Francisco, United States
Arrival in San Francisco Bay area : 1851
Skills : engraver, painter, lithograver
Influence : Düsseldorf School


Art education, teachersArt academy of Cassel, Horace Delaroche, Paul Vernet
Partners : Arthur H. W. Nahl, William Dickman, Harrison Eastman, August Wenderoth
Patrons : Samuel P. Avery, Edwin B. Crocker, Society of California Pionneer
Clubs, institutions: Currier & Winter, Jones and Wool’s Gallery, Nahls Brothers Art and photographic gallery, Olympic Club

Main exhibitions

1838 Art Academy, Berlin
1847 & 1848 Paris Salon
1849 & 1850 Art Union, New York
1894 World’s Colombian Exposition, Chicago
1915 Panama-Pacific International Exposition, San Francisco
1935 California Pacific International Exposition, San Diego

Resources in the Bancroft Library


Hittell, Theodore & Nahl, Charles Christian (illustrator) (1860).  The Adventures of James Capen Adams :  Mountaineer and Grizzly Bear Hunter, of California. Boston: Crosby, Nichols, Lee and Company ; San Francisco : Towne and Bacon. Catalog Record

Nahl, Charles Christian (186-?). A California Gold Rush Wood Engraving. Berkeley, California: Tamalpais Press. Catalog Record

Delano, Alonzo & Nahl Charles Christian (1854). The Idle and Industrious Miner. Sacramento, California: James Anthony & Co., 1854. Catalog Record

Bausman, William & Nahl, Charles Christian (1945). The Idle and Industrious Miner. Buena Park, California : Ghost Town News. Catalog Record

Nahl, Charles Christian & Arthur, Hugo Wilhelm (1863). Instructions in Gymnastics / by Arthur and Charles Nahl, Representing the Various Exercises on the Ground, the Vaulting Horse, Parallel bars, Horizontal Bars, Rings, etc., Including Construction of Pyramids, Plans of Apparatus, etc. San Francisco, California: A. Rosenfield. Catalog Record

Nahl, Charles Christian (1858). The Miners’ Own Book: Containing Correct Illustrations and Descriptions of the Various Modes of California Mining, Including All the Improvements Introduced from the Earliest Day to the Present Time [Microform]. San Francisco, CA: Hutchings & Rosenfield. Catalog Record

Data Visualization : mapping of Christian Nahl’s biography

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