Stephen S. Thomas (1868-1956) was born in San Augustine, Texas. Primarily a portrait painter, he attended classes at the Art Students League from 1885 to 1888. He also studied privately with William Merritt Chase and J. Carroll Beckwith. In 1888, Thomas moved to Paris and studied at the Academie Julian with Jules Lefebvre and Benjamin Constant. He also studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts. Thomas remained in Paris until 1914, and then moved to New York City. He lived there until 1919 and then permanently settled in California. During his life, Thomas was a member of the Los Angeles Art Association, the Paris Society of American Painters and the Pasadena Art Society. The artist's works are part of public and private collections around the United States, including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Fine Art in Houston, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Los Angeles Museum of History, Science, and Art. His portrait of Woodrow Wilson is in the collection of the White House.