Will James was born Joseph Ernest Nephtali Dufault, June 6, 1892 in Quebec Province,Canada. It was during his creative years everyone grew to know him as Will James.
His early years were shared with his family. He started drawing at the age of four on the kitchen floor. At a young age he traveled to the United States.
During the next several years, Will drifted, worked at several jobs, served in the army and began selling his sketches. He married Alice Conradt in 1920 and in 1922 sold his first writing, "Bucking Horse Riders." That started the sales of several books. In 1926 he came out with his most famous book, "Smoky." His fictionalized autobiography, "Lone Cowboy," was written in 1930 and he wrote his last book, "The American Cowboy," in 1942. In all, he wrote and illustrated 23 books.
His later years were spent on his ranch at Pryor Creek, Montana (shown above) and at his Billings, Montana home on Smoky Lane. Will witnessed movies made from his books and his fame grew. He died in 1942 only to leave memories in the form of his artwork and books which people will cherish forever.
The Will James Art Company is dedicated to the quality reproduction of the art and writings of this famous western artist.