1893 Connecticut Map

1893 Map of Connecticut

Weir traveled constantly between his two rural properties in Connecticut and his home in New York City. He frequented both Connecticut locations at least annually, generally spending June and July in Branchville and August and September in Windham, although this pattern varied especially after 1899 when his professional successes and his second wife’s inheritance allowed him to no longer rely on teaching to support himself. After 1899 Weir spent up to six months a year in rural Connecticut.

The Barns at Windham 1905

J. Alden Weir, The Barns at Windham, c. 1905
Private Collection, Courtesy National Park Service,
Weir Farm National Historic Site

New England Barnyard

J. Alden Weir, New England Barnyard (Branchville), 1904
Oil on canvas, 20 1/8 x 24 1/3", Acquired 1920
The Phillips Collection, Washington D.C.

In 1910, the year he painted The Spreading Oak, Little Lizzie Lynch, Portrait of Lou Frink, and The Adams Children, he lived in Windham for six months, from June through November. Often, when Weir resided in Windham or traveled in Europe, his brother John summered at Weir’s Branchville property. Weir's incessant shifting of locations was made possible by the existence of extensive rail lines at the time. By train one could travel quite easily between New York, New Haven, Wilton, Windham, Willimantic, New London and various other locations throughout Connecticut and New England.