Captain Oliver Lane House

Collection Type

  • Art


October 1859




View of a house and wharf built by Captain Oliver Lane in Annisquam, MA, in 1833. Center of the scenic picture is a large white house, with an ell and a white fence surrounding the house. In the foreground is a river with three boats and a wharf, other houses and figures of people looking out windows, porches, in fields and on the wharf. 'Squam Rock' is at the upper right. Oil on canvas and in original gold frame. [see photo neg #47492-A]


Descriptive Terms

landscapes (representations)
paintings (visual works)
oil paint (paint)
scenes (depictions)
Oil on Canvas


In Cherished Possessions 2003-2005: This was the home that ship captain Oliver Lane left behind when he set forth on one of his many voyages. In 1854, Lane was described as “one of the best sailors afloat,” but his journal suggests a life of hardship. From his earliest journeys in 1811 or 1812, until his journal's end in 1857, he recounts voyage after voyage, some close to home, some taking him all the way around the world. His life as a sailor was only moderately profitable, and as he noted repeatedly, it kept him away from his home and those he loved. Given his attachment, small wonder that he commissioned the artist Alfred Wiggin to paint the house he and his wife had built for their family in 1833.


In pencil, in the lower left of the picture, is: Alfred H. Wiggin '61 . [Note: the signature on the front of the picture was ""added by Alice Moore's father,"" per a letter from A. Moore to NFL. The middle initial is incorrect and the date differs by two years.] In script with pencil, on the back of the canvas in the lower corner, is: Painted by Alfred J. Wiggin, Oct.1859. [NFL notes that ""the inscription is probably the artist's writing.] Stamped/stenciled? on the back of the canvas is: From M./J. Whipple's/Artists' [Supplies] illeg. , 35 Cornhill, Boston. A white round sticker, on the canvas back, has an illegible faded text in black felt tip pen. On a white label with a red border on the canvas back, in blue ballpoint, is: Property of/ Mr. and Mrs. B.K./Little/60 Spring Street/Essex, Mass/01929 . Typewritten on a white label with a red border, on the canvas back is: House of Miss Alice Moore, 8 Arlington St., Annisquam (1962). Built in 1833/by her ancestor, Capt. Oliver G. Lane./ After death of Capt. Lane in 1867 his/daughter Charlotte rented 6 rooms to borders. Used as a summer home since/1918.

Associated Building

Subject Captain Oliver Lane House,

People and Organizations

Captain Oliver Lane House


Wiggin, Alfred J. (Maker)


28 x 40 (HxW) (inches)

Credit Line

Gift of Bertram K. and Nina Fletcher Little

Accession Number



Massachusetts (United States)
Annisquam Harbor (Essex county, Massachusetts) [bay]