Earl Horter (1881 - 1940) was born in Philadelphia, PA. A self-taught realist who favored urban subjects, Horter was also a painter and an illustrator. He did attend an etching class in 1903 when moving to New York for an advertising job, but returned to Philadelphia to stay in 1917. Horter spent 1917 - 1923 as the N W Ayer Advertising Firm's art director.
Always a man of modest means, Horter would save up to purchase and collect modern art. In 1931, he had to start selling from his collection in order to live during the Depression. Horter taught as well, at Temple's Tyler School of Art, the Graphic Sketch Club (now the Fleisher Art Memorial), and the Philadelphia School of Industrial Art (now University of the Arts).