Lynn Meadows Artist: Martin Johnson Heade (American, 1819–1904)


American Paintings and Sculpture

Not on view

In this painting, Martin Johnson Heade captures a place of transition. Some old-fashioned square-riggers appear in the far distance on the water. Along the railroad that bisects the marsh, a modern train exits the scene, polluting the air with coal smoke. Men dig clams from the mudflats, a traditional form of labor, adhering not to the railroad’s schedule but to that of the tides. Although Heade’s pastoral frankly acknowledges the railroad, which was playing a major role in the Civil War, it offers no hint of the dramatic transformation of nearby Lynn, Massachusetts, into a major industrial center.


Oil on canvas


12 3/8 × 30 3/8 in. (31.4 × 77.2 cm)

Credit Line

Gift of Arnold H. Nichols, B.A. 1920

Accession Number



19th century


Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of records is ongoing.

  • Helen A. Cooper et al., Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness: American Art from the Yale University Art Gallery, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2008), 242–43, 247, no. 138, ill
  • Handbook of the Collections, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 1992), 29
  • Louise Minks, The Hudson River School (New York: Crescent Books, 1989), 60-61
  • Malcolm Robinson, The American Vision: Landscape Paintings of the United States (London: Octopus Books, 1988), 30-31
  • Theodore E. Stebbins Jr. and Galina Gorokhoff, A Checklist of American Paintings at Yale University (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 1982),
  • Theodore E. Stebbins Jr., The Life and Works of Martin Johnson Heade (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1975), 46, 73, 99
  • Theodore E. Stebbins Jr., Martin Johnson Heade, exh. cat. (College Park, Md.: University of Maryland, 1969),
  • "Recent Gifts and Purchases," Yale University Art Gallery Bulletin 32, no. 1 (Spring 1968), 27
  • "The Artists' Fund Exhibition," Albion (1866), 561
Object copyright
Additional information

Object/Work type

landscapes (representations)


Signed lower left "M.J. Heade/1863"

Technical metadata and APIs


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