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Lumbering in Winter

American Art

Our artist presents an effective picture of lumbermen engaged in their winter work. The scene represents the first stage of lumbering,—felling trees and cutting them into logs of the desired length.

While the narrative accompanying this illustration discusses the image in the context of the commercial lumber industry, the art historian David Tatham has suggested that Homer actually here depicted “farm cutting,” or the felling of trees on a family’s land (here the Baker farm) for its own use. The artist has telescoped two events—felling a tree and splitting logs— into dangerously close proximity.

MEDIUM Wood engraving
DATES 1871
DIMENSIONS Image: 12 1/8 x 9 1/8 in. (30.8 x 23.2 cm) Sheet: 14 5/8 x 11 1/8 in. (37.1 x 28.3 cm) Frame: 22 3/4 x 16 3/4 x 1 1/2 in. (57.8 x 42.5 x 3.8 cm)
SIGNATURE Signed lower left: "J.P.DAVIS Sc."
CREDIT LINE Gift of Harvey Isbitts
MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
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