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Samuel Putnam Avery (1822–1904) was an American connoisseur and dealer in art. He was born in New York City where he studied wood and copper engraving and was extensively employed by leading publishers. He began business as a dealer in art in 1865. In 1867 Mr. Avery was appointed commissioner in charge of the American art department of the Exposition Universelle in Paris. He was a founding, and for a long time, trustee of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and was a life member of important scientific, artistic and educational associations. He founded the Avery Architectural Library at Columbia University in memory of his son Henry Ogden Avery, an architect of note, who died in 1890. In 1900 he donated his collection of 17,775 etchings and lithographs to the New York Public Library.

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