Quick Reference

Time Period:
Painted about 1930 - '31

Route 8A, just before Vermont.

Oil on Canvas



30 x 36

Deerfield Inn, 1931
Mt. Holyoke Coll. Dwight Hall, 1931
Stoneleigh-Prospect Hill School, '33
Syracuse (NY) MFA, 1934
First Nat. Bank, Greenfield, MA, '42
Deerfield Academy, 1957
Deerfield Academy, Hilson Gal., '70




For years this painting was incorrectly listed on the website as being named "Grey New England".

Related Links

Featured Artwork: Gray New England

RSW's Diary Comments

"Painted about 1930. Made from the Smith place in North Heath. A chalk drawing of the same subject is owned by Reverend Arthur T. Kinsolving, noted Episcopal rector."

Editor's Correction:

The name as it appears on the stretcher
The painting name as it appears on the stretcher.
However, it is NOT is Woodward's handwriting!

The name as it appears on the frame plate
The name as it appears on the frame plate. In an
odd occurrence it turns out to be the correct correct.

In regard to the name of this painting, there has been a lot of confusion. On the website, since its inception, Dr. Mark listed it as "Grey New England" despite the frame plate for the painting saying "Gray". In a lot of ways, it is Woodward's own fault using both spellings in a number of painting names. Both spellings are correct. Grey is the common British spelling whereas Gray is the American. We believe Woodward uses one spelling relating to coloring and atmosphere and the other for climate and attitude but that is another story for the Scrapbook section.

Historically, name plates on Woodward paintings are notoriously incorrect. We do not give them much weight which is why we believe Dr. Mark discarded it. Complicating matters more is that on the back of the stretcher is written the name, "In Grey New England." However, this is NOT in Woodward's hand. Also, Woodward exclusively used pencil to write the painting name on the stretcher for paintings about to be exhibited. This name on the stretcher back is written in a grease marking pencil.

You do a search for all of the names of this painting in our exhibition records and the only one that comes back with any result (6) is "Gray New England."

In RSW's own hand, he exes out In
In RSW's own hand, he exes out "In" in the news-
paper clipping and does NOT correct the spelling of Gray.
He often corrected misspellings, even in novels he has read.

What ultimately decides the matter for us comes from the 1934 Syracuse Post Star article for Woodward's exhibition at the Syracuse Museum of Fine Art. The column is a syndicated article titled, "Art Chat," written by Anna Olmsted who also happens to be the director of the museum. Olmsted gives a review of the painting using the name "In Gray New England" adding the "In" and spelling gray with an "A". BUT Woodward had a habit of underlining all of the names of paintings mentioned in articles he kept in his scrapbooks. From time to time he had to make name corrections because newspapers get them wrong from time to time. You can see from the image to the left that Woodward, crosses out "In" and does NOT correct the spelling of Gray and so we will consider this the heaviest evidence the name is "Gray New England" and we have made the appropriate corrections.

Additional Notes

Click on image for whole article
The Syracuse Post Star, Art Chat,
by Anna Olmsted, Director of
the SyracuseMuseum of Fine
Art, February, 1934

Art Chat by Anna W. Olmsted

"....and in this same harmonious group is Gray New England, with its single flash of blue sky amid menacing gray clouds, a subtle piece of painting....."

The farm house in 2006
The farm house in 2006

Relationship to Deerfield:

This artwork exhibited at Deerfield Academy, Hilson Gallery, December, 1957, in a tribute show following Woodward's death as well as in May, 1970, as part of the school's American Studies Group 1969-70 Project featuring Woodward.

The chalk drawing was made before December of 1929 and while 1931 could very well be the year Woodward made the oil, it is possible he painted the oil in 1930. The painting may have had special meaning or value to Woodward. It remained in his private collection of work hanging in his home.