Catherine Ryan submits-

Thank you again Sibley family! The recent GMG Hopper post of the Sibley family helping to identify the Rockaway Hotel in an Edward Hopper drawing generated more discoveries! For reference, here’s the Hopper Rockaway image and a link to that previous GMG post-

Catherine Ryan confirms Rockaway Hotel as another Gloucester Edward Hopper match with help from the Sibley family

Posted on March 17, 2013 by Joey C



There are several Edward Hopper examples in the collection of The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston , including this beauty, the 1926 House by ‘ Squam River . Can you name its Gloucester location? There are notes indicating that it’s in the general direction heading into Annisquam.


IT’S NOT. I admit to clinging to this suggested area with some unreasonable hope because of personal bias (my parents lived on Wheeler’s Point for 30 years, and the charm and might of its full panoramic vista). I climbed around friend’s properties, sought views from Pole Hill and multiple high vantage spots. But I could not connect that landscape anywhere to this Hopper image.

All it took was reading one tiny email description from a GMG reader – I didn’t even need to visit the spot—to know immediately how right it was. I’m sure some other readers may know it, too.

Hint #1:

For one thing, many of these Gloucester Hoppers are views seen from a succession of magnificent granite sentinels. They are sites of great natural beauty conditioned geographically by glacial stone. This particular location has a massive sweep of boulder outcroppings.



Hint #2

These two houses in the Hopper drawing are still standing and exact.


Hint #3

If there is one Hopper, chances are there are others within close proximity.  Here’s two other Hopper drawings, all from the same general perch.


Who had the keen eyes? Thank you to Kathy and Jeff Weaver for identifying the sight line for the Gloucester Edward Hopper image, House by ‘ Squam River in the collection of the MFA. It’s no surprise to me that artist Jeff Weaver—who has a history of Gloucester veduta painting himself, and who knows a great thing or two about extraordinary detail, composition, surface and color as bearer of light– would have a tip! You can see more of Jeff’s work here http://www.jeffweaverfineart.com/.  Gloucester creates many optimum sites for plein air study, and artists continue to evolve their work into unmissable interpretations of reality.

And here’s the Answer:

You are looking past Centennial across the landscape of Newell Stadium and Gloucester High School . (Perhaps this might be a possible new funding source for Newell Stadium? This same stadium and field site is the landscape featured in an iconic Gloucester Edward Hopper work of art. )







There’s another famous Gloucester artist with a link to this same location, and a nice connection for Gloucester high school, and our students to know. Thanks to Fred Buck for sharing this Strople photo from the collection of the Cape Ann Museum and their archives for the Gloucester HarborWalk’s  Virginia Lee Burton marker. It’s a contemporaneous photograph of the GHS high school being built. The steam shovel was the model for Virginia Lee Burton’s beloved Mary Ann from Mike Mulligan ©1939. Follow back the plume of smoke- “Mary Ann” is turned away from the viewer.




  1. This delightful contribution is one of the reasons GMG is such a positive asset in our town. Not only does it provide another valuable contribution to our understanding of Hopper’s work, it’s the result of lots of collaborative effort and a great initiative by Catherine Ryan. And there’s Mike Mulligan’s steam shovel too! What more could one want? Thanks, Catherine, thanks, Joey.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. What an amazing catch! I’ve tried doing this with old photographs and have a hard time. I cannot imagine finding this one. And to be led astray by Annisquam. I bet someone’s heart went pitter pat when they lined it up for the first time.

    Congrats to all.


    1. Mine did, that’s for sure. Paul, I love your avatar update –the black tux pops with the HRC. very dapper.


  3. Love it, just love the old photos then and now. Keep up the great work. Do you have any of the Emerald Forest in front of my house on Myrtle Sq. area when a forge was there and lumber yard?


    1. Interesting. I’m not sure, but I will keep it in mind, both Hopper and photos then! Thank you for adding in.


  4. Great post.
    Here’s a bigger challenge. I’ve been searching for this boulder for months without success.It appears on one of Fred Bodin’s wonderful historic prints. I believe it to be somewhere in the hills behind Wingaersheek Beach. I’ve tried google earth and ground exploration (lots of poison ivy). For all I know, it could be in someone’s backyard. Please help.


  5. Catherine did a wonderful job letting us know there are over 100 images of Hoppers all around Gloucester and counting. We are the Hopper town! Take that Nyack!


  6. Just great¡ I visited Gloucester knowing Hopper’s works very well, but I didn’t know they were so related to this beatiful town. Next time I visit you, I will look after Hopper’s work in Gloucester¡


  7. Great posts and photos here! For some photos of Hopper’s locations in Vermont (yes, Vermont!), see my web site, http://www.hoppervermont.com. There’s some resonance in Hopper’s paintings of the White River with his Gloucester views showing the Squam River in the background–but Vermont was (and is) less developed and Hopper was able there to paint “pure” landscapes without architectural features, for the most part. The story and reproductions of these little known paintings are in my book, “Edward Hopper in Vermont.” – Bonnie Tocher Clause


  8. That’s a fantastic painting and, I’m certain it was painted from my grandfather’s back yard. He lived at 87 Western Ave, high above the level of the street-5 flights of steps above. His house looked out over this view. I remembered it as soon as I saw it because I saw it hundreds of times from the 1930s till he died in 1978. If memory serves, the large house, right foreground was owned by a Gloucester policeman, Bill O’Maley.


  9. Marty or someone else may want to check these ROCKS out.
    I just went back through the above post and am pretty sure pictures of the rocks in Hint 1 are also in my grarndfather’s back yard. His home was built by Reverand Rider in the 1920s and the rocks were known as Rider’s Rocks when I was growing up in the 40s – 70s. Later I heard of them called Hubbard’s Rocks. They were to the North of grandfather’s home at 87 Western Ave. and to the West of the end of Hovey Street. There was a nearly impassable road from his back yard down to Dale Avenue when I was a kid.


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