Lake Winnepesaukee

Thomas Cole (1801-1848)
Date: 1827 or 1828
Medium: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: 25 1/2 H x 34 1/4 W

Signed, lower left: T Cole

Provenance: The exact line of descent in the Van Rensselaer family is unknown but it is likely that it went from Stephen III's son, William Patterson Van Rensselaer (1805-1872), to his son, Captain Kiliaen Van Rensselaer (1845-1905) to his daughter, Sarah Elizabeth Van Rensselaer (1873-1945), who married Benjamin Walworth Arnold Jr. (1865-1932), and then to his daughter from his first marriage, Dorothy Treat Arnold (Mrs. Ledyard) Cogswell (1892-1984)
Credit: Gift of Dorothy Treat Arnold Cogswell, Jr.
Accession Number: 1949.1.4

By the time he made this painting, Thomas Cole was a prominent landscape painter with many eager patrons. To meet the demand, he began making regular summer sketching trips and amassing a stockpile of drawings. It was from one of those summer drawing trips that this painting emerged. Lake Winnepesaukee is a large, irregularly shaped, freshwater lake twenty-two miles long in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. Its name was the subject of numerous Native American legends and was thought to have various meanings including "the smile of the Great Spirit" and "beautiful water in a high place." This landscape is part of the Albany Institute's premier collection of more than 500 works by Thomas Cole, founder of the Hudson River school of painting.