This river painting was created by George Frederick Carl Waller, born 6 May 1893 in Chicago, Cook County, Illinois. He was the father of George Frank John Waller, born 1918. Lisa Shea (daughter of George Anthony Waller) gave this painting to her son, James Tiberius Shea.
From George A. Waller: My grandfather (George F. Waller, 1893-1945) painted two scenes of the Fox River, one dated 1909 and both signed by him. The Fox River is in Illinois (not sure where the family summer cottage was).
From Lisa Shea: If the family owned a summer cottage surely there are land records? That would be fun to know about, to go visit it. Especially if I’m going to be making up mugs and prints and things with these images on them ;). We could go out on a field trip to visit the area. Is there any way to search Illinois land records for real estate he owned in his lifetime?
We now think maybe the cottage was just rented, not owned, so there wouldn’t be records of it. Maybe we can figure out where the castle-like building is? It looks like Pratt’s Castle, but Pratt’s Castle wasn’t built until 1937. Bettendorf Castle wasn’t begun until 1931. There’s only Dunham Castle which was built in 1883. It’s unlikely, as that building is further inland and bright yellow, but I’m writing them to ask.
This painting is not dated and the back only has a note that Tony (George A. Waller) wanted the image. The other painting in this pair has lots of genealogy and information on its back.
That original wooden frame was hand-made and falling apart, and the matting paper was old and damaging the painting. Lisa had National Gallery in Millbury MA dis-assemble it, re-mat it with acid-free paper, use museum-quality glass for crystal clear viewing, and reframe it.
Here’s the companion painting to this one –
The photos of this painting were taken by Lisa Shea and are copyright to Lisa Shea.