Painter and printmaker, Augusta Rathbone was born in Berkeley, California. In 1921, upon graduating from the University of California at Berkeley, she left for Paris to continue her studies at the Academie de la Grande Chaumière. She was introduced to printmaking in 1927, and, thereafter, worked primarily in color aquatint combined with line etching.
Rathbone's work has been included in the Spring and Autumn Salons in Paris and exhibitions at the Musée National d'Art Moderne, the Brooklyn Museum, the California Society of Etchers, the California State Library, the de Young Memorial Museum and the Oakland Museum. Her artistic affiliations included memberships in the California Society of Etchers, the San Francisco Women Artists and the National Arts Club. Her work is represented in numerous private and public collections, including the Brooklyn Museum, the California Society of Etchers, the de Young Memorial Museum and Rutgers University.