Leroy Walter Flint (1909-1991) was born in Ashtabula, Ohio, the son of a hardware dealer. After graduating from high school, he went to work for the American Fork and Hoe Company where he spent five years learning to shape and forge hot metal. Flint saved his money to go to art school but the stock market crash wiped out his savings and his plant closed down leaving him unemployed. He won a scholarship in 1932 to the Cleveland Institute of Art which paid for his tuition and art supplies. After graduation, Flint took a job with the WPA and was assigned to make a lithographic study of the Ohio River and its people. He and a friend, Charles Field purchased an old boat and floated down the Ohio River until they reached Louisville, Kentucky and then traveled down to Vicksburg, Mississippi. In the summer of 1939, Flint and another friend spent the summer in Searcy, Alabama painting. Flint returned to WPA and worked as a painter, often painting murals.