Thursday, January 19, 2012

Sketching at Chatham

Sketched with the new Fredericksburg sketching group at Chatham Manor on Saturday. It was very cold and I was trying to work with my fingerless gloves so I was sketching very quickly. This is one of several small statues in the garden.

I followed the sun to the west side of the house to sketch these two old Catawba trees. It's a rather gruesome story: THE WITNESS TREES  These gnarly old Catawba trees were alive during the Civil War. Chatham was used as a hospital and these two venerable old trees stood just outside the surgery. As limbs were amputated, they were tossed out the window to land at the base of these trees. Walt Whitman visited [during the war] and wrote that the pile of human limbs would fill an oxcart.  Leaning, and rotting, these trees are propped up by steel bars (which I didn't draw) and will probably disappear before too long. I felt compelled to bear witness to the Witness Trees.

1 comment:

Elizabeth Seaver said...

Wonderful sketches, Paula!