In Their Words

Wynne's Influence on Deerfield

Read Aloud

None of us realized at the time how much we owed to Mrs. Wynne. Not only as an artist and craftsman but as a leader and organizer. Being a member of the already well-established Society of Arts and Crafts in Chicago she knew something of the problems we were likely to encounter and could anticipate and avoid for us, the rocks upon which so many crafts societies were ship-wrecked.... Mrs. Wynne was an enthusiastic follower of [William] Morris. I believe she would have liked to see a little Hammersmith in Deerfield. Perhaps it was with this dream in the back of her mind that she went about looking for genius in everyone, or failing that for ability, perseverance. Helping, encouraging, inspiring, suggesting, never antagonizing. Like Morris her own gifts were many and diversified. She was a writer, musician, painter, as well as craftsman. When the Morris wave swept this county it found in Deerfield an eager though rather bewildered group. "Just why" every one was saying "is a hand-made article better than one made by machinery? If you can buy a factory-made chair that is strong and comfortable for a reasonable price, why go to the trouble of making one by hand?...It was while we were reading up and puzzling our heads about this world-wide craze that Mrs. Wynne came home from Chicago for the summer....

Eleanor Arms presentation on the Society of Deerfield Industries, handwritten transcript from the collection of the Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association.