Eunice Rowell Kinsey

Eunice Rowell Kinsey
Craftsbury Common, VT

Eunice was born in South Albany, VT in 1927. As her mother and grandmother before her, she learned the skills of domestic arts: knitting, sewing and embroidery, making rugs and quilts, but she also loved to draw and paint. She drew on paper bags, in soapsuds, on steamed up windows. From her mother, Eunice learned needlework and a love of experimenting with color. She enjoyed embroidery because it was very like painting. After highschool, Eunice taught school for a year and that summer, with her earnings took art classes at Boston's Museum School of Fine Arts. She had found her passion and she longed to continue, but her father told her that studying art would not help her earn a living. In 1948 Eunice married Bob Kinsey and they moved to their dairy farm the next year. With barn work, field work, the garden, sugaring, the wood pile and raising seven children, Eunice didn't have much extra time for artistic endeavours.

Once her children and husband had gone to college, Eunice began to consider it. She took some studio courses. Another year the Kinseys sold a cow and paid her tuition for a semester. Eventually Eunice earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Studio Arts with a teaching certificate from Johnson State College. Eunice teaches private art classes, works as a mentor and continues to paint. These paintings and their descriptions, she created for her family to show them what life had been like.

Eunice's paintings—as well as quilts, needlework and lace created by members of her family—are currently on exhibit at the Vermont Folklife Center in Middlebury.


Eunice describes writing and illustrating her memoirs.

A dramatic event from childhood depicted in words and pictures "The Sugarhouse Fire" (see illustration below).