Bitter Friends

Owen Wister

Artist Frederick Remington and writer Owen Wister were close friends, starting with their first meeting at Yellowstone in 1893. Both were Easterners who were fascinated by the West.

They collaborated on several magazine articles, frequently in Harper’s, and on the novel Lin McLean in 1897. But they didn’t work together on Wister’s tour de force The Virginian.

Wister biographer Gary Scharnhorst says that Remington became jealous of Wister’s friendship with Theodore Roosevelt, which strained the relationship of the artist and novelist. So when he had a chance to illustrate The Virginian, Remington declined.