The Friends of Hearthside received four original family portraits that originally hung in the dining room when the Talbots lived here in the early 20th century from descendant, William (Bill) Richmond Talbot, whose grandfather, Arnold Talbot had owned Hearthside. The five generations of the family include Silas Talbot, George Washington Talbot, Charles Nicoll Talbot, William Richmond Talbot, and Arnold Talbot. Friends of Hearthside had commissioned a reproduction of the Silas Talbot portrait, the patriarch of the family, whose original portrait hung over the fireplace in Hearthside's dining room during the Arnold Talbot era and is currently owned by Bill Talbot.
The four original paintings, which were in very poor condition, have been restored and were re-hung and dedicated in October 2013 in their previous location. These were covered with over 100 years of coal soot, some with missing areas of paint, others with holes in the canvas, and all having mildew and other damage on the frames after having been stored in a basement for many years. Alice Miles of Providence, a well-respected artist with over 30 years of experience in restoring portraits, was contracted to do the restoration work. She did much of the restoration work right at Hearthside in the dining room, where the public was able to view the portraits being brought back to their original beauty.
Our sincerest appreciation to William Richmond Talbot III and Peter Talbot, descendants of the family, along with grants from the GE Foundation, Pfizer Foundation and the Susan F. Gonsalves Foundation for providing the funding necessary to restore and reproduce these portraits. We are also grateful to Alice Miles and Diane Adam for the amazing restoration work, and to photographer David Cruz for the reproduction of the Silas Talbot portrait.