Underneath other papers in the battered tin box that Catherine found beneath the floor boards of the old cottage, she uncovered a fragile journal with sketches and writing in it.
The journal had apparently been kept by Catherine’s great-grandmother, Julia, who interspersed sketches of the area around their cottage with diary entries. Wirh some of the sketches she wrote a description or explanation of the scene she had sketched.
On the last page of the journal was a sketch titled, Small Bay. Underneath it, a note, which appeared to have been added later: “Gustave’s favorite place to fish — a little cove across the lake — we called it the Small Bay. He caught a lot of fish there and we ate many good meals from his catches. The day before he left for the war was a cool, beautiful sunny day, so we rowed over to Small Bay one more time.
"He dropped off Mildred and me on the shore, and I found a perch where I could watch Mildred throw stones into the lake while I drew this sketch. Gustave sat fishing in the rowboat for a nice long while, and was happy to catch our supper one last time.
“I wanted to give him this sketch to remind him of us and this place while he was away. But in the commotion, I forgot to give it to him before he left, so I made another drawing just like it and mailed it to him in France. When they returned all his things, I found the frayed sketch folded in the shirt pocket of his uniform.”
Woodblock print with watercolor
3.5" x 4"; Edition of 20