Edwin Deakin was born in Sheffield, England, and immigrated to America in 1856. He lived in Chicago where, for a time, he earned his living painting commissioned portraits of Civil War heroes. In 1870, he moved west to San Francisco and established his home and studio. Deakin's paintings, in the Romantic landscape tradition, created iconic images of the Sierra Nevada, especially the Lake Tahoe Basin. He was a member of the Bohemian Club and a close associate and studio mate of Samuel Marsden Brookes. From 1887 to 1890, he painted in Europe and exhibited at the Paris Salon. From then until his death in 1923, he lived in Berkeley on a large tract of land he purchased where he built a mission style studio.