Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania

I’ve been enjoying sharing some of the short trips that my favorite boy toy and I take.  I didn’t do enough of it last year, so thought I’d go back now and share some photos and stories.

Last May, my favorite boy toy and I took a trip to Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania.  This is the home of the Wyeth’s – N.C., Andrew, Carolyn, Jamie & others in the family.  As artists, they were prolific and had a profound influence on art in America.

Wyeth Studio (up the hill from the house)

Unfortunately, the home, studio and grounds of N.C. Wyeth were tightly controlled.  Photos were not allowed nor could we wander.  We were required to stay in the group, so my pictures of the family compound are limited.  This website has the pictures of what we saw, although the interior of N.C.’s studio (bottom right) was much darker and dingier than it appears in the photo.

N.C. encouraged creativity in the children.  They were homeschooled and many evenings were spent in the front room, where the children played the piano and sang.  He loved his children, although he did send them to his sister for art lessons to keep family peace.

N.C. was a large, burly man.  His mother’s family came from Switzerland and to be honest, he looks very much like my Swiss great-grandfather with his round face and unruly hair.  N.C. himself grew up in Massachusetts, having come to Chadd’s Ford to study with Howard Pyle.

View From The Front of the Studio

We toured the museum afterwards and saw both originals and reproductions of the book illustrations that N.C. Wyeth was known for.  While Howard Pyle’s work tended to be diginified and staid, N.C.’s work was bold, bright and full of action.  The people were usually in motion, doing something.

My husband and I started the trip with a great deal of enthusiasm, but that went away quickly.  We expected the Wyeth’s to be a bigger deal than they were.  Chadds Ford isn’t ashamed of them, but apparently there are other things it would rather be known for.

Later we went driving back roads, looking for picturesque scenery.  Although the rolling hillsides were nice, neither of us found anything to stop and take a picture of.

Pennsbury Inn

Our favorite part of the trip was the Pennsbury Inn, where we stayed with Chip & Cheryl Grono.  It was beautifully decorated, quiet, and the grounds were gorgeous.  We took a ton of pictures both days.

Walkway From Parking To The House

Last fall, I shared why I like staying at a bed & breakfast and why I would pay the extra to stay in one again.

Backyard View

Upon our arrival, we were given water bottles and access to a water cooler.  Boy, did we appreciate that!  It was already pretty hot and it was nice being able to refill the bottles so frequently.

The Backyard Was Quiet and Peaceful

Chip made us a wonderful breakfast each day, gave us advice where to go eat and what to see, and directions to get around.  We also watched the birds at the bird feeder, squabbling over who got what.

The Roses Were in Bloom

I loved this hedge of roses!  I took multiple pictures of it, plus of the roses too.

There was a huge botanical garden down the street.  We didn’t take time to go through it.  We learned later that our passes to our local botanical garden would have gotten us in for free.  Had I known that, I would have gone through it even if it was a short visit.

Backyard

One good thing about the trip is that it was only about 4 hours from home, provided we didn’t caught in traffic through Baltimore and D.C. (which we didn’t).  That was good because my favorite boy toy was on call for jury duty that week and had to call each night for instructions.  If he had to go in, we could have packed up and gotten home in time.  He never had to appear, so I’m glad we didn’t rearrange our plans.

Side Yard

And that’s our trip!  I’m glad we did it, but I don’t see us going back when there are so many other places we’d like to go see.

Over at A Daily Life is a book review of “A Writer’s Book of Days” written by Judy Reeves.  There are other book reviews also on topics ranging from creativity to writing technique to time management.

24 thoughts on “Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania

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  4. One of my favorite places in the whole world is Longwood Gardens, which is located in Kennett Square, PA, very close to Chadd’s Ford. The Du Pont family had big influence on that corner of PA and neighboring DE. Besides Longwood, I’ve enjoyed visits to the Hagley Museum and Nemours Mansion and Gardens, all associated with the Du Pont family. Sorry your visit to the Brandywine area was disappointing.

    • Longwood was the place! It did look cool, but we couldn’t see spending the money for just a few hours, not realizing we could have gotten in for free. If we go back, it would be to check out the museums and other sites.

      It was fun going to Chadd’s Ford but we would have liked to experience the Wyeth’s more. That’s how it is on some trips.

    • For years, my vacations were spent going to see my sister. My daughter so dinged me for it because she wanted to go to cool places like Disney. But I only had so much time and money. It’s nice as an empty nester to be able to do some travel, although most of my vacation is now spent going to see my daughter. And my sister spends her vacation time seeing her daughter.

      • Our vacations now are going to Minnesota/Wisconsin to see family. That works fine. We did go to Disney a few years ago and will probably do it again sometime. The trick is to make meaningful memories without spending too much. We do a lot of things around here in the summer, since it is a vacation hot spot.

        • You’re right – it is very possible to have great memories without spending a fortune. Your vacations sound like mine used to. I don’t miss going to the fancy places. I like seeing my daughter (or my sister when the kids were little) and that’s fine for my vacation.

          Thanks – as always – for taking a few minutes to leave a comment.

  5. Enjoyed that you shared so many beautiful photos and details of your trip to Chadd’s Ford. The single white rose from the hedge is stunning. I tried planting some roses when we first purchased property. I learned spring bulbs, hostas, and day-lilies are more suited to my ‘plant it and forget it’ approach to landscaping.

    • I’m glad you enjoyed the trip. Those roses were awesome and I got a number of great pictures of them.

      My neighbors grow something called knock-out roses. They’re hardy, require minimal work and are very pretty. I don’t know how far below zero they will survive though. I’m more of the plant it and forget it too, even with my garden.

  6. If you ever find yourself here in Maine, consider visiting the Farnsworth Museum, in the city of Rockland, Maine. They have a permanent collections of Wyatt paintings and illustrations and they respect and love the Wyatts themselves. Rockland also has a Lobster Festival, so that might be a nice trip, killing two birds with one stone!

  7. The bed and breakfast looks heavenly!!! Your photos make me want to be there — right now! Thanks for sharing this adventure! (But now I’m curious what other thing’s Chadd’s Ford wants to be known for….. LOL)

  8. Lovely to join you on your trip! I have always loved the Wyeth family art. Hw cool to see the home. I can’t help but wonder if you saw the iconic hill in the painting of the girl looking up the hill…

    Gorgeous photos too!

    Man. I needed a vacation. I just got one thanks to you!

    Peace, Jen

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