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Painting, Garrison House, York, Maine

This is a Painting. It was created by Winslow Homer. It is dated 1875 and we acquired it in 1918. Its medium is brush and oil paint on canvas. It is a part of the Drawings, Prints, and Graphic Design department.

A sister and younger brother hold hands in the foreground, walking down Berwick Road, then made of dirt, passing a boarded-up garrison. Scottish immigrant Robert Junkins built the garrison, in York County, Maine, around 1660 when he settled in the area, and lived there until his death nearly forty years later; his family remained in the house until the last member living there died in 1844. When Winslow Homer painted this scene in July 1875, he was probably reacting to the American interest in colonial revival styles. The garrison, a fortified one-family house, was a popular architectural style in seventeenth-century York County. Its projecting roofs and overhanging upper stories allowed openings in the floors for use in battle: one could shoot missiles from holes in the projections, or pour water down to quench a fire. Such protection and defense were necessary in New England frontier towns where Native Americans, the French, and other settlers constantly fought for land. The garrison was one of the last two in the area when it was burned by vandals in 1889, and today Homer’s portrait of a house serves as a record of both family and American history, place, and time.

This object was donated by Mrs. Charles Savage Homer Jr.. It is credited Gift of Mrs. Charles Savage Homer, Jr..

Its dimensions are

39.8 × 57.3 cm (15 11/16 × 22 9/16 in.)

Cite this object as

Painting, Garrison House, York, Maine; Winslow Homer (American, 1836–1910); USA; brush and oil paint on canvas; 39.8 × 57.3 cm (15 11/16 × 22 9/16 in.); Gift of Mrs. Charles Savage Homer, Jr.; 1918-20-11

This image is in the public domain (free of copyright restrictions). You can copy, modify, and distribute this work without contacting the Smithsonian. For more information, visit the Smithsonian’s Terms of Use page.

If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url= |title=Painting, Garrison House, York, Maine |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=9 June 2023 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>