Hurd was born in Roswell, New Mexico on February 22, 1904 as Harold Hurd, Jr. Called Pete from his early days on, he legally changed his name to Peter in his early twenties. In 1921, he enrolled as a student at West Point Military Academy in New York state. Selling a painting to a supervisor, he felt encouraged to become an artist instead of a military career man.
In 1924, he enrolled in the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and also took private lessons from well-known illustrator N.C. Wyeth. In 1929, he began to work in tempera on gesso-prepared panels, which became the medium he most frequently used.
He married Wyeth’s oldest daughter, Henriette, in 1929, and took his bride to New Mexico, the place of his birth, for an extended honeymoon. They later established their home in the southern part of the state in San Patricio, and Henriette also became a prominent artist.
In the mid-1930s, he was a mural painter, completing post-office murals in Big Springs and Dallas, Texas, and in Alamogordo, New Mexico. During World War II, he was a war correspondent and artist for Life magazine, a job in which he used his military background. His special assignment included a bomber base in Britain.
In 1942, Peter Hurd was elected to full membership of the National Academy of Design
Matthew Baigell, Dictionary of American Art
Ray Castello, American Eagle Fine Art