Thomas Wolfe wrote, “You Can’t Go Home Again” but I think you can. I had the opportunity to visit my hometown, Richmond, Indiana, last weekend on a plein air painting adventure with Indiana Plein Air Painters. I hadn’t been back for at least 15 years and did not have high expectations due to some economic problems that I’d heard about. I don’t know about that but the town sure looked pretty to me.
Richmond sits on the Indiana – Ohio border in the eastern center of the state. It is an old town with lots of Quaker settlement as well as many other religions. Since the late 1800s, they’ve embraced quite an art scene including one of the few in-school art museums at the local high school. I grew up thinking that everyone passed famous paintings on the way to class. Little did I know.
Richmond known for it’s beautiful Glen Miller Park and Millionaire’s row, along with some of the most exquisite old houses and varied architectural styles. I could find many subjects for painting there!
The event was only one day so I decided to visit my old alma mater of Earlham College and paint Stout Meeting House. The weather was perfect with a slight breeze and a very peaceful campus due to summer break.
Later I took some time to visit my great-grandma’s house, one of the oldest log cabins in Wayne County. I was so pleased to see that it had been lovingly restored and looked better than when my great-grandmother lived there. No one was home but I promised myself to stop by on my next visit.
And I had forgotten how many beautiful churches Richmond boasts. It seems as if there is another church on every corner.
So, although you can’t go home again, you can visit it. Your hometown just might surprise you. I’ll be back soon and longer.