"The Shack was up in the hills maybe near Shelburne Falls. Owned by my grandfather. Picnics in summer with my uncles et al. Painter had a studio nearby down the hill. One of my favorite paintings. Owned by my mothers father." This was written by William B. Foster. His mother was Pauline Burnham. Father Roy Foster."
The Burnham Cottage is located just behind the barn of the
Hiram Woodward Place which RSW later converted into his home and studio after the Redgate fire.
During the 1940's RSW often had his helpers (including me, drive him out to the location and spoke fondly of his days living there. The property has gone through several owners since then. It is currently occupied by a retired real estate lady who very much loves the little home.
"At this time, it is unknown exactly how RSW split his time between the cottage and the studio. Initially it was believed that he used Redgate as both his home and studio. However, several pieces of information lead us to believe that he made his home in the cottage and worked in the Redgate Studio. This evidence includes the photo to the right in which RSW indicates the location of his cottage in his own handwriting. He is pointing to the location of the Hiram Woodward house."
Mentions of the Burnham Cottage may be found in the RSW diary notes for the following paintings:
The following, below, is an article by Margaret Getchell for the Boston Evening Transcript
(Dec. 8, 1920). It gives an excellent description of Woodward's life and work at Redgate during the early years of his career.
The website staff finds it so interesting that this reporter would travel by train to spend the day with Woodward after receiving attention of note with his paintings exhibited at the Boston Art Club exhibitions. The reporter makes note that Woodward purposely does not make it a point to appear at exhibitions.
"He fears that if he himself should appear at the galleries where they are shown, a sentimental interest might be awakened in his work; and he wants no such special interest, but rather desires his power as an artist to be the foundation for the reputation which he is so rapidly building."
It is a great insight to Woodward and one of the more intimate profiles ever written about him. It is a great read.