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According to Goodwin biographer Larry Len Peterson, “For almost thirty years, many of Goodwin’s finest paintings first appeared on Brown & Bigelow calendars which could be found in almost every home in America. On May 16, 1910, Goodwin submitted Cruisers Making Portage to the St. Paul, Minnesota calendar company and described it as, ‘one painting of Timber Cruisers on the portage.’ For his efforts, he was paid $200.

“A timber cruiser surveyed the land that was available to log and estimated the amount of desirable timber available for the lumber company. Once the land had been cruised, lumber companies made bids to purchase either the land or the rights to cut the timber from it. Strong, courageous, and trustworthy, the cruiser appealed to Goodwin much like the cowboy appealed to Charles M. Russell. It was a subject Goodwin was very familiar with and would
revisit a number of times. In fact, in 1910, Goodwin and his friend Russell were photographed hiking in the countryside around Russell’s Bull Head Lodge in Glacier National Park with similar sleeping bags on their backs supported by a strap around their heads known as a tump line. There is no finer example than Cruisers Making Portage of comrades working together in the grand out-of-doors to complete a dangerous and challenging job.”

PROVENANCE
The Artist
Brown & Bigelow, St. Paul, MN
Paul Andros Brooks, Minneapolis, MN 1920s
Present owner, by descent

LITERATURE
Calendar (St. Paul, MN: Brown & Bigelow, 1912), illustrated
Larry Len Peterson, Philip R. Goodwin: America’s Sporting & Wildlife Artist (Hayden, ID and Tucson, AZ: The Coeur d’Alene Art Auction and Settlers West Galleries, 2001), pp 275 and 280, illustrated print

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