Eric Sloane, Heirloom Apples, and Cider

December 13, 2014 |  by  |  No Comments

I recently received a request from Peter S. Montgomery of Warren, Connecticut.  Peter’s project is an important one – if you have some information that can help Peter in his efforts, please email.  Thank you!

“Greetings from Warren, former home of Eric Sloane.

I am working on a project E.S. would have approved of: increasing public awareness of CT’s heirloom apples and saving those that can be found, then having scions cut and trees grafted.  That said, I was reviewing 1955 first editions of his works and could not find a specific reference, but did find the sketch of the apple orchard tools on another site.  Are you aware of any of his writings on farm life, cidering and orchard keeping which might be used in my efforts and, if so, what were his comments?”

A new article on Eric Sloane

December 12, 2014 |  by  |  No Comments

http://www.common-place.org/vol-13/no-04/walthausen/

          This scholarly glimpse into the literary body of work produced by Eric Sloane crossed my desk the other day. Writing in Common –Place, an online journal sponsored by the American Antiquarian Society and the University of Connecticut, author Abigail Walthausen provides some much needed context for Eric’s literary inspiration. In my opinion, there is truth in much of Ms. Walthausen writes, but I have come to view Eric Sloane’s artistic inspirations in a somewhat different light. Much of what Eric was trying to convey in his works on paper and on Masonite was, ironically, an acknowledgement our nation’s progress. This acknowledgement was couched in a philosophical look at loss, and it is that ethos of loss that seems to permeate Sloane’s works. Yes, America has progressed greatly since the founding of our nation, but what have we – individually and collectively – lost during this period? It’s a bold and a somewhat impertinent question the artist asked. It is the question, however, that makes Eric’s point that he was not “longing for a better past” or simply “nostalgic”, but his exploration was more nuanced, more complex.

July 23, 2014 |  by  |  No Comments

The IRS 1023 application submitted by the Friends of the Eric Sloane Museum has been reviewed by the Internal Revenue Service and the Friends of the Eric Sloane Museum is now officially a non-profit organization!  The process was lengthy, difficult – and so worth the effort.  As a 501c3 public charity, the Friends of the Eric Sloane Museum can accept monetary donations as well as donations of stocks, bonds, and securities, paintings, tangible property, and many other forms of donations.  As we have practiced since the inception of the organization, no one in the Friends of the Eric Sloane Museum receives compensation in any form.  We are strictly a volunteer organization committed to the advancement of Eric Sloane and the museum he founded.

July 20, 2014 |  by  |  No Comments

Weather Hill Farm is seeking original pen and ink illustrations by Eric Sloane, N.A. for an upcoming project.  We are seeking images, preferably direct scans but clear photographs are welcome as well – please include how you would like your name(s) to appear in a credit when submitting an image.  Scans or photographs should be clear and bright and saved at a high resolution as a jpeg file.  You may send to wil@weatherhillfarm.com or use our mailing address:

Weather Hill Farm

2746 Stein Lane

Lewisburg, PA  17837

Please feel free to contact us with any questions about this project.

June 30, 2014 |  by  |  No Comments

Don’t Forget!  The annual July 4th “Ringing of the Bells” ceremony at 2 p.m. at the Eric Sloane Museum.  This is a charming event and one that you will remember for years to come.

March 12, 2014 |  by  |  No Comments

Eric Sloane (c. 1969) at the entrance to the newly constructed Sloane-Stanley Museum (as it was then called).

March 2, 2014 |  by  |  No Comments

Eric Sloane in May of 1969 at the Eric Sloane Museum of Kent, Connecticut.  The scene at appears in the photo has not changed.  If you were to enter the Eric Sloane Museum today the painting, hand written sheet that appears above Eric’s head, and the winnowing tray next to him are all still in exactly the same location.  The winnowing tray and painting were to be sold together – this being an example of what Eric termed his “placements” or “placement painting”.  The idea was to sell a painting as well as the actual object that inspired the painting.  Eric Sloane saw, heard, and felt much in the early American landscape in which he found inspiration.

March 2, 2014 |  by  |  No Comments

A photograph of artist Eric Sloane at work on a mural in the Luna Park Ballroom of Coney Island, c. 1933.  One of the earliest photographs I have uncovered of the artist at work.

November 17, 2013 |  by  |  No Comments

I recently read Trails Begin Where Rails End by Albert D. Manchester (1987 Trans-Anglo Books) and found it a very interesting read.  The author documents, among other topics related to early 20th century motoring adventures in the southwestern United States, much about the tourist trade in and around Taos, New Mexico in the 1920s.  Made me wonder how much of the sites depicted in the photographs Eric Sloane might have seen and experienced.  Sloane wrote of supplementing his meager income from selling original sketches and paintings to the tourists of Taos by acting as an “unofficial tour guide”.  It was fascinating to see c. 1920s photographs of Taos, the LaFonda Hotel, and “Harveycar Driver-Mechanics” – men who piloted large and luxurious touring cars out into the hinterlands in what was known as “The Indian Detour”.  Eric Sloane must have at least been aware of this tourist service.  Interestingly, a photograph on page 141 of the book depicts a Harveycar and tourists in front of the Taos pueblo with some natives looking on from above.   I recall this subject, or one extraordinarily similar, in an Eric Sloane painting of Taos.

October 27, 2013 |  by  |  No Comments

Mending fences the other day about Weather Hill Farm.  A twin prop airplane of some vintage droned in the distance and, as I often do, I took it a sign to stop my labors and reflect on Eric Sloane.  At the last board meeting of The Friends of the Eric Sloane Museum, which we held on one of the large picinic tables in front of the museum, a gentleman stopped to introduce himself to us.  After some conversation, one of the board members asked the gentleman how he came to know Eric Sloane.  It turned out that the gentleman was a pilot and very early in his career flew commercial aircraft.  He told us of his first weeks on the job, where a sort of “training” took place, for at the time flying the route he was to assume – the South Pacific – was considered somewhat of adventure.  When his training addressed the subject of weather, flying, and storms in that part of the world, his instructor handed him several early Eric Sloane books on meteorology and told him to study the books carefully, for the airline had nothing better to give him than Eric Sloane books!

It set me to thinking about a painting I recently acquired.  Affixed to the frame on the verso was a charming note from mother to son, reminding the son (and recipient), that Eric Sloane was the man whom “Dada” had studied as he learned to fly for the Army Air Corps in World War II.  How much of Eric’s works filtered into the hands of these early pilots?  How many lives might Eric’s works have saved?  Impossible to know, of course, but no doubt our country, and aviation in general, owes a debt of gratitude to a man who took the study – and ignorance of – meteorology very seriously, yet was so able to translate his knowledge into illustrations that could be readily understood by the young and inexperienced.