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Edwin Romanzo Elmer chalk painting of apple orchard, Buckland, Mass.
TitleEdwin Romanzo Elmer chalk painting of apple orchard, Buckland, Mass.
Full Size Image
SubjectElmer, Edwin Romanzo, 1850-1923; Color Drawing; Orchards; Fruit trees; Apple products; Buckland (Mass.)
DescriptionChalk painting by Edwin Romanzo Elmer has a signature, E.R. Elmer, and a date of 1906 in the lower right hand corner the painting. On the back of this framed work is a typed note on a paper label printed Smith College Museum of Art, Northampton Massachusetts 01063. The note, dated June 1981, reads, An all-rag, acid-free mat has been inserted between the original mat and the pastel to prevent possible damage or discoloration from contact between the original wood pulp mat and the pastel paper. In addition, an all-rag backing board has been added at the back. There is a second Smith College Museum of Art label stating, lent by Miss Maud V. Elmer, Sept 11, 1952. Maud Elmer was Edwin's niece, the daughter of his brother Samual. The scene depicts an apple orchard at harvest time with a man on a ladder holding a basket with his left arm. It appears the man is picking apples from the tree and placing them in the basket. A barrel, likely used to collect basket loads of apples, is near by. Although the exact location of this scene is unknown, it is possibly located in Buckland, Mass. where this artist lived. Apples have been grown and harvested in Buckland and its bordering communities since at least the late 1700's. According to Fannie Shaw Kendrick in The History of Buckland 1779-1935, farmer Lemuel Taylor (1748-1834) brought to Buckland the grafts of a very fine quality of fall apples which to this day are popular. They are known as 'Lem's graft' or 'Taylor Apples.' A section of Buckland is known as Apple Valley. There are still several working apple orchards in town as of this writing in March 2010. Edwin Romanzo Elmer was six years old when his parents moved from Ohio to the Mary Lyon Farm on Put's Hill in Buckland, Mass. Mr. Elmer's mother, who attended Mary Lyon's school in the Major Griswold House on Upper Street in Buckland, was a religious, warm-hearted person. His father was a farmer who loved children and told them stories of pioneer days and adventures with the Indians. Edwin grew up roaming the hills of Buckland and developing his artistic skills. Edwin eventually became a distinguished artist, perhaps best known for his 1890 painting, Mourning Picture. This he completed while grieving the death of his nine-year-old daughter, Effie Lillian, who died in Buckland on 3 January 1890. After his daughter's death, Edwin and his wife Mary moved to Ashfield, Mass. to live with his wife's parents. They then moved to New York City where Edwin studied at the Academy of Design. Mr. Elmer was also an inventor. He patented a bracket used in shingling houses, designed a double-action butter churn, and created a simple machine for making whip-snaps, which was a viable industry in Buckland for many years. His main interest, though, was always art. Many of his paintings were scenes of his beloved Buckland hills and valleys.
CreatorElmer, Edwin Romanzo, 1850-1923
ContributorsSand, Pamela, Photographer
RelationFrom the collections of the Buckland Historical Society, Inc., P.O. Box 88, Buckland, MA, 01338,
Rights2010 Buckland Historical Society, Inc. Upper Street, P.O. Box 88, Buckland MA. 01338 email:
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