An Edward Hopper Scrapbook

3 Washington Square North
New York 3, N.Y.
Feb. 11th, '64


Dear Mr. and Mrs. Harnett—


Sugar Maple was painted in the early fall of 1938 on the property of Bob Slater at S. Royalton, Vt. where we were staying at the time. He had been postmaster there until a change in politics threw him out.

It's a lovely land. They had charming animals on the place. A calf named Nancy, with eyes like a Hollywood star used to lick E. Hopper's coat tails and follow him about. A handsome big cat posed for me willingly as though he knew what it was all about. Then the big hurricane, the first that all of us in this New England section knew much about, came and ripped up plenty. We rushed back to Cape Cod, carrying Sugar Maple and a batch of Vermont water colors in the trunk compartment of our Buick. The Boston Museum has another of that batch of water colors. They bought it in Feb. 1939—a 20" x 25"—title—First Branch of the White River. Another, the Vermont Sugar House 14" x 20" was bought by Oliver James in 1941 and carried off and we have never heard of it since.

The pictures are, in a way, our children and I always like to know who gets them. They, these people, are (sort of) in-laws—but pictures acquired at the gallery, we seldom meet them and are glad to know their names and hope the pictures are happy, hung on white walls if possible and kept out of sunlight that would fade the color. Sunlight, bad for water colors but fine for oils, keeps the whites from turning yellow—Something in the oil does better out in the light. But sunlight directly on water colors, damages the color.

E. Hopper has done no water colors of late years. The Met has his House of the Fog Horn—1927 at Two Lights which is S. Portland, Me. D.G.R.—a little steam engine—Santa Fe, New Mexico, 1925 Saltillo Mansion—Mexico—1943

The Goldstones of Friends of The Whitney own the Wedding Cake House—this is that we call it—Gloucester 1924 or 3. It's a beauty.

E. Hopper now prefers to paint in his study from sketches used for his compositions so water colors become rarer—so take care of what you now have. How nice to have met the two of you last night.

Sincerely, Jo N. Hopper
(Mrs. Edward Hopper)

Courtesy of the Whitney Museum of American Art Archives.