William Stanley Haseltine was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1835 to artist Elizabeth Stanley Haseltine. His family was an artistic one; his brother James Henry Haseltine became a sculptor, while his other brother, Charles Field Haseltine became a gallerist in Philadelphia. His son, Herbert Haseltine, would eventually become a successful sculptor, who would focus primarily on animals. Though Haseltine graduated from Harvard in 1854, he spent time between the years of 1850 and 1851 studying in Philadelphia with German artist Paul Weber. It is with Weber that Haseltine embarked for Düsseldorf, Germany in 1856. In Düsseldorf other American artists, such as Albert Bierstadt, Emanuel Leutze and Worthington Whittredge, formed an informal artistic study group. Together they embarked across Europe traveling and making sketches, specifically down the Rhine River and around the Italian Alps. Upon his return to the United States he participated in the 1859 exhibition at the National Academy of Design in Philadelphia. During this time Haseltine was a tenant in the famous Tenth Street Studio Building, other tenants at the time included his colleagues, Bierstadt, Leutze and Whittredge. It was during the 1860s that he produced his largest body of related works, all based upon the New England coastline. He paid specific attention to meticulously rendering the light and lines of the rock formations, something he learned in Düsseldorf. In 1860 he was elected as an associate of the National Academy of Design, and by 1861 he was a full Academician. After 1866 he moved to Rome, only returning to the U.S. occasionally to make sketches. After moving to Italy he turned his focus to the Italian Coast, and due to this his palette changed to warmer hues. Haseltine died of pneumonia in Rome in 1900. He is remembered today for his extensive body of work, and his contributions to the genre of landscape painting.