The Beehive: the official blog of the Massachusetts Historical Society

Spring Flowers

The month of May brought a sudden profusion of new growth to Boston’s green spaces this year: front yards, city parks, community gardens, and wild untamed lots all burst forth into a riot of green foliage and bright flowers.

To celebrate the season on this final day of May, I bring you the botanical watercolors of Louise Wheelwright Damon (1889-1973), who painted these vibrant pictures in 1956. I love the examples of amateur art in our collections; that the trained eye and hand of artists such as Susan Anne Livingston Ridley Sedgwick or John Singleton Copley exist in our collections alongside these lesser known -- sometimes even unknown, unremarked upon -- works that brought their creator pleasure, were saved by a family member, and ultimately donated to our institution where researchers of the future could discover and enjoy them.


Westwood Lodge, 45 Clapboardtree Street, Westwood, Mass., 14 May 1956.

Graphics. Damon 004.



“Wild Crab Apple”

Westwood Lodge, 45 Clapboardtree Street, Westwood, Mass., 23 May 1956.

Graphics. Damon 009.


Untitled irises

Westwood Lodge, 45 Clapboardtree Street, Westwood, Mass., 8 June 1956.

Graphics. Damon 017.


Untitled queen anne’s lace

Westwood Lodge, 45 Clapboardtree Street, Westwood, Mass., 23 May 1956.

Graphics. Damon 030.


The Louse Wheelwright Damon botanical drawings are available to access in the MHS reading room or at a distance through the purchase of PDF or TIFF reproductions. Please check out Visiting the Library and Reproduction Services page for more detail.

permalink | Published: Thursday, 31 May, 2018, 12:51 PM


Contribute your comments

comment fineprint

Any html tags will be automatically removed.

We will not display or share your email with anyone. We do require the email so we may contact you if there are concerns regarding the content of your comment.

The border of the comment box will appear red if your comment exceeds the size limit of 1500 characters. Comments longer than this will be trimmed.

CAPTCHA Image   new image
  what's this?

The image of letters and numbers is a security measure that helps us prevent spam. Typically only humans can read it correctly; computers and programs designed to scan the web for vulnerable forms cannot. If you cannot read the image, click the "new image" link to generate a different set of characters until you find some more legible to you.

Please enter the characters in the image(no spaces, case does not matter):