Country Lanes: Portrait of a Century Past
In his new book COUNTRY LANES author William R. Truran has delivered a delightful story, in full color, as a valuable “coffee table” book that is the conversation piece for the evening by the fireplace. “This book is fun and an easy read,” says author Bill Truran, “and contains a rich and precious story of the rural America that existed some 100 years in the past.” A prime focus of the book is a local painter and artist, Louis Larsen, who captured these works of art that depict life in the area. Louis was a wiry fellow who would put paint on the side of a barn or house, and then work on a painting of the residence for the owner. These paintings would be handed down through the generations and are now family heirlooms, mounted over the fireplace as a most treasured possession. Tales abound of Larsen’s drinking and socializing with those for whom he painted. There are over 80 of these unique “portraits of a century past” that are in the book— representing the entire known collection of the artist.
The book COUNTRY LANES also contains information about the lifestyles of the rural area some 100 years ago. These include fishing on the mountain lakes, and horse racing. The author includes tales he encountered related to the area such as swimming below Paper Mill Pond dam, wildlife, and how the area has remained a beautiful place. Horses and cows are depicted through the book, and there are scenes reminiscent of the past, such as cows crossing the main roads, kerosene lit streets, and horse drawn carriages.
Dr. Truran has provided a full color rendition of Larsen’s complete works, and has supplemented the paintings with background information, period photographs, local lore, then\now comparisons, and much more. This book is a pleasant leisure read, and can be left on the coffee table for family and friends to reminisce how life was “way back then……”