Eric Sloane, N.A. Untitled 23″ x 35″ Oil on Masonite
While unfortunately not titled, we know that this scene depicts an early American “saltbox” house, so referenced because of the resemblance to, well, a saltbox. In 18th and 19th century America, the saltbox was present in nearly every kitchen. Usually made of wood and with a slanting lid to make adding and removing salt easier, the saltbox did indeed resemble the shape of the “saltbox” home. Incidentally, most 18th and early 19th century American homes faced south to take maximum advantage of the winter arc of the sun, yielding more heat and light into the house. The rear – or north facing – side of the house was sloped so that the cold northern winds would blow over the house. Few if any windows were present on the north side of these early homes.
With thanks to Wil Mauch of Weather Hill Farm. Photo used by permission, from Wil Mauch’s Aware: A Retrospective of the Life and Work of Eric Sloane. Learn more about this most talented and fascinating American artist at www.weatherhillfarm.com.
Scott Sheldon of the Friends of the Eric Sloane Museum and Andrew Rowand of the Eric Sloane Museum look over the north side of the museum building as we prepare for foundational work on the new three-season classroom. Construction should begin in early spring and the project completed by the end of summer 2023. We hope you can participate financially in this experience – your donation in any amount will not only be greatly appreciated, but will be used to create a new space for hands-on classes on early arts, crafts and trades.
Happy 4th of July from “The Committee of the Two Erics”! That is Eric Hatch on the left, and Eric Sloane on the right. “…the Let Freedom Ring project envisioned by the two men, who met as ‘The Committee of the Two Erics’ to promote an idea born from a radio interview Eric Sloane gave in July of 1962. During that interview, Sloane spoke of the early American tradition of ringing bells in celebration of the nation’s independence instead of the more modern fireworks displays. Listeners responded enthusiastically to the idea, and “The Committee of the Two Erics” began an article and letter writing campaign that ultimately led to a joint congressional proclamation (77 Stat. 9441), adopted 26 June 1963 to have bells rung in public buildings across America in commemoration of the nation’s independence.” – From Wil Mauch’s Symbols of American Spirit: 50 Years of the Eric Sloane Museum
Author and artist Eric Sloane (1905-1985) photographed outside of the newly built Noah Blake cabin, probably late summer of 1974. It appears that Eric has in his right hand several riven wooden shingles. After a period of about a decade of being shuttered to public visitation, the Friends of the Eric Sloane Museum undertook a 4 year project of completely rebuilding the cabin, using as a template the cabin as drawn by Eric in his 1962 “Dairy of an Early American Boy: Noah Blake 1805”. You can read more about the cabin, and the book that inspired it here: www.friendsoftheericsloanemuseum.org/cabin
Come celebrate with us on July 2, 2022. Admission is free. We will have live music, demonstrations, gust speakers, tours, food, and more. Looking forward to seeing you at the Eric Sloane Museum! For additional information, please call Andrew at the museum – 860- 927-3849.
Two of the nicest gentlemen you would care to meet. On the left is Andrew Rowand, who has done an incredible amount of work as the Site Manager for the museum. Andrew is incredibly hard working, has fantastic ideas, and is very knowledgeable about Eric Sloane, the museum, and many, many historic crafts and trades. He has been a great partner! On the right is John Pennings, my successor in every meaning of the word. John is a natural leader, and is very skilled and knowledgeable in more things than I can even remember. Thank you, John, for serving as our board president. We’re surveying the lean-to shed and listening to Andrew’s needs for an enclosed space dedicated to education…it looks as if this will be the next major project that the Friends of the Eric Sloane Museum will undertake in support of our mission to assist the museum. We will keep you posted!
A big thank you to Scott Sheldon and John Pennings of the Friends of the Eric Sloane Museum and museum head Andrew Rowand for all their incredible work on the Noah Blake cabin yesterday! My special thanks to Andrew for going the extra mile in helping me to install the brand new hands-on simple machines exhibit in the cabin. Visitors young and old can now experiment with simple machines and understand fully how they can provide a mechanical advantage.
Thinking over this evening all I have to take to the Eric Sloane Museum to do some spring maintenance on the recently rebuilt Noah Blake cabin. If you haven’t read Eric Sloane’s Diary of an Early American Boy, may I humbly suggest that it is time that you did.