View Full Version : Heritage of Motherhood location

26-Feb-2017, 20:49
I've had the good fortune to be required to work in Georgetown ME once in a while and have taken the time after those jobs to seek out some of the landscape that the pictorialists of a hundred years ago enjoyed at Seguinland, Little Good Harbor, etc..

Patricial Fanning's book "Through an Uncommon Lens" on page 167 implies the "Heritage of Motherhood" photo of Kasebier was made on the rocky shore here. Well... There's lots of barren rocky shore here. Miles of it. The exact tripod holes probably don't matter, but it interests me. Libby Bischof's book "Maine Moderns, Art in Seguinland, 1900-1940" also confirms Georgetown as the location of the photo and references Fanning and Barbara Michaels bio of Kasebier page 97.



Location E is the beach I suspect was where these photos were made. My cell phone snaps shows a wide angle view, but if the more pictorialist of the two were shot with a longer lens, it would have the background that my cell phone log photo has and could made made within the scope of that scene. The sharper of the Kasebier photos could be either similar location and reversed or at the north end of the beach where my LF camera bag is, but probably closer to the water as the rocks are darker below the high tide line.

On the map F is Day's property, G is White's road; I don't think the original school building exists anymore. There are other beaches where it would be possible to have a similar photo, but they are further away and it makes sense for it to be within walking distance where they couldn't work out of a car trunk.


William Whitaker
27-Feb-2017, 19:48
Neat post Jason! The first and second images are taken OF Gertrude Käsebier, not BY her? Not casting doubt, just don't wish to become the unwitting victim of possibly misplaced prepositions. ;)
Interesting stuff!

28-Feb-2017, 06:48
Thanks Will. The first two are taken by Kasebier of her friend Agnes Lee grieving the death of her daughter.

Its not written in any descriptions by the academics, but I suspect the choice of a beach is meaningful because spending time at a New England beach shows everything is temporary. twice a day the tide gives and takes away and storms make temporary the things above the tide line, amount of sand, etc..

William Whitaker
28-Feb-2017, 13:14
That's such a personal time. I'm not sure I'd ever have the courage to try to photograph someone who was experiencing that kind of grief.

The first image is very powerful. The background is suggestive of the sea, even though I understand it is the land next to the sea. And the implied swells suggest the tidal forces that Ms. Lee no doubt felt surging through her during a time of powerful grief. I like that her face is upturned. And overall, is there a feeling of Wyeth? Or do I sense that about everything I see from Maine?