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The Residence of David Twining

1845-1847
Origin: America, Pennsylvania, Bucks County
Unframed: 26 1/2 x 31 9/16in. (67.3 x 80.2cm) and Framed: 32 x 37 x 1 1/2in.
Oil on canvas
From the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Collection; Gift of David Rockefeller
Acc. No. 1933.101.1
A farmscape showing a mixed group of animals at lower left within a fenced enclosure and, beyond them, outside the enclosure, a man plowing with a two-horse team. Beyond the plowing vignette, a man stands at a cider press, with other animals and domestic fowl nearby and outbuildings at far left and center rear. In the lower right corner, a small boy stand beside a woman seated in a ladderback chair with a book on her lab. Beside her, a man stands with one hand on the gate leading into the livestock enclosure. Beyond the threesome is a vignette of a woman on horseback and a man mounting another horse beside her. Beyond them, a cat and dog square off. A two-story farmhouse is shown at far right, with a woman standing in the doorway. In the far distance, a hazy treeline is depicted.

The 3-inch oak frame with an outer bead and gold-leaf lettering is original.


Label:This is the most elaborate of the four known views that Edward Hicks painted of his childhood home. It includes more people, animals, and fowl than the other versions, and the humorous vignette of a squabbling dog and cat is unique among the four.

At an early age, Hicks was sent to live with family friends, David and Elizabeth Twining, who raised him with their four daughters, Elizabeth, Sarah, Mary, and Beulah. Mary was Hicks's favorite. He depicted her and her husband, Jesse Leedom, at center right, Mary on a horse and Jesse mounting one. (The Folk Art Museum's picture is thought to have been painted for Charles Leedom, a son of this couple.)

At lower right, Hicks showed himself as a small child standing at his foster mother's knee, with David Twining standing close by, his hand on the gate. Elizabeth is probably reading from a Bible. In later life, Hicks warmly recalled such moments in his memoirs when he wrote: "How often have I stood or sat by her, before I could read myself, and hear her read, particularly the 26th chapter of Matthew." The comfort, love, and security that Hicks experienced in this Quaker household were recalled fondly throughout his lifetime.


Provenance:Probably painted for Charles Leedom, Newtown, Pa.; to his granddaughter, Mrs. Lydia L. Knight, Newtown, Pa.; to dealer Carl Lindborg, Newtown Square, Pa.; purchased from Lindborg by Mrs. John D. Rockefeller, Jr.; given to the Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY, by Rockefeller in 1939; transferred from the MoMA to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY, in 1949; purchased from the Metropolitan Museum of Art by David Rockefeller and given by him to CWF in 1955.
Inscription(s):Lettered in gold-leaf on the lower member of the frame is: "The Residence of David Twining 1787".