“Alone” Painting – Part 3″

29 Jul

For the latest update with additional information and photos, click HERE

If you missed Part IV, you’ll find it HERE.

And yet another “Alone” painting surfaces – the same girl-in-the-boat-at sunset scene that Lizzie Borden gave to a handy man.   Thanks to a comment submitted to this blog we have the name of another artist, Heinrich Vosberg, who painted an original of this scene.      The commenter had this to say:

Bo Says:
July 26, 2009 at 2:38 pm e

“I have a copy as well. It was found in the attic of my girlfriend’s great grandmother. She had it framed. It looks to be oil paint and the canvas has large blank edges with writing on it. It is signed H. Vosberg 1887 on the bottom left. Send me your email and I will send you a pic.”



I “Googled” Vosberg and discovered a load of sites about him, including this “Best Answers” forum that poses the question of value of this painting by Vosberg – I have to assume it’s the same person who wrote me.   Otherwise, logic presumes two people have two original originals.  The entire exchange is quite interesting, but here are some extracts:

Hi! Heinrich Vosberg was born in Germany in 1833, and lived until 1891. One of his paintings, Lake with sunset, Herrenhausen (1876), is even in the Royal Collection of artwork of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth  II.… His work is also highly regarded in the International community, so I would urge you not to be in a hurry to sell this painting, but to throughly research all of the information I have given you above, without making any commitments to anyone regarding a possible sale, until you have the big picture of information regarding the painting you own.”

So we learn this painting was actually entitled  “ALONE AND FORSAKEN” – at least by artist Vosberg.  Get this:  A small print can be had for $1.50.  That’s right.  Click HERE and scroll down until you come to image “SIG425”.

It remains a mystery who actually painted the original-original of this girl-in-a-boat-at-sunset scene but what we do know is that it was so popular that countless prints were made and apparently easy to come by.  Actual oil on canvas original paintings that have surfaced here so far were painted by:

1.  Herman Alfred Leonard Wahlberg (1834-1906) – and was given by Lizzie to a handyman.   (Provenance describes it as a “picture” so it may not have been an original painting but a print of Wahlberg’s original).

2.  Father Arnold Janssen, or Janseen (1837-1909) who was canonized and previously featured in this blog  HERE.

3.  Heinrich Vosberg (1833-1891) – his paintings are still sold through various art auction houses.  He named this one “Alone and Forsaken”.

Slide cursor over image when it comes into full view.  (There’s music).

One of those untold number of prints sold for less than $30 on eBay just recently.  The cherrywood frame, circa early 1900’s,  and the newsprint behind the frame were worth more than the print.

I’ve become less interested about the fact Lizzie gave this painting to a handyman than I am about the genesis of its original creation.  Perhaps more readers out there will come forward with *their* original “Alone” painting.


Posted by on July 29, 2009 in Uncategorized


36 responses to ““Alone” Painting – Part 3″

  1. Laurie

    August 19, 2009 at 2:02 PM

    I have been meaning to contact you for quite a while. About 10 years ago, I purchased a print of this painting at a flea market in Connecticut. I liked the subject and it reminded me of my property on the lake. A few months later I came across another print, and since then my collection has grown to include seven prints, one not so well done oil on canvas, a black and white etching(with the artist’s name, date and title)and two celluloid boxes with the print on the top. One of the boxes has an inscription on the bottom that indicates it was a Christmas gift 100 years ago. I have had them all displayed on the walls of my dining room for the last several years. The interesting thing for me is that they are all done differently with color and scenery, but they are obviously the same painting. I always scout for this print everywhere I go. It is always so much fun to find another one.

    • Steve Walt

      February 6, 2010 at 10:33 AM

      I have a framed copy. It is very old with a wood backing, which is something I have never seen. It is a paper print 11-1/2 x 18, in black and white, signed Heinrich Vosberg 1887. What could it be?

    • john constantine

      January 23, 2015 at 12:54 PM

      I have a oil painting of a girl in a boat on canvas with a very old wood frame with wedges in the has a signature signed M.E.Fitz Jayrell.I’m trying to find maybe someone who could lead me in the right direction as of value.916 207 5446.

  2. Linda

    November 12, 2009 at 9:07 PM

    I just found your website. I also have this “print” which I love. It is framed and in a very nice old frame. I bought it in an antigue shop in MN but he didn’t know anything about it. I didn’t want to take it apart to search for a name so have just been searching the web.

  3. Merry Wennerberg

    November 24, 2009 at 3:17 PM

    I just found your website also. I have collected her for the past 40 years. don’t know why I just love her. I have about 28 different prints and oils that amateurs in art class have done. From 1900 on. I also have several celluloid boxes and celluloid photo albums. They are all hanging on one big wall above the fireplace. My husband thinks he lives in a museum. Chimney flue covers, prints, pastels, oils, boxes. What a treat to know that someone else thinks the same. People just shake their heads. I have found alot in ohio, where I was born and some were gifts. I guess I haven’t read far enough yet to know about the handyman story. this is so exciting. It has been hard to find anything about her. The lady I mean. Isn’t she sweet and so sad….

  4. Johnny

    December 23, 2009 at 8:03 PM

    I have an oil of this painting which I bought from an antique dealer about 8 years ago. The painting is signed “Sartori” and dated 1876. The painting I believe predates that of Vosberg and Wahlberg. I have over the last few years tried to find out more about Sartori the artist and happened to find a undated and unsigned version of the painting on ebay. Comments from members had indicated that the painting appeared a copy done by Vosberg which I found curious due to the date. If you want a pic let me know and I’ll send you one,

  5. catherine

    February 14, 2010 at 8:33 AM

    I bought a copy of this print at an antiques fair in 1986 in Buxton, UK, and have been searching the internet on and off to find out more about it. Mine is sepia and framed in a wooden frame and hangs over the bed – it is my favourite picture ever. Its good to think others like her too

  6. Nancy

    August 19, 2010 at 4:59 PM

    I purchased this painting at a garage sale for $5.00. So happy when I found this site. I am puzzled about the picture that I purchased and wondered if you could tell me anything about it. I cannot figure out how this was painted. It is a piece of rectangular glass, about 10×17 inches. The glass appears to be hand-made (has the uneven ripples). The back of the glass is kind-of “wallpapered” with an old newspaper, from Chicago. The advertisements are from the classifieds re. rooms for rent “with running water” or with “an out-house”, etc. The painting of the sad girl almost appears to be painted onto the glass. I cannot seperate the layer of newspaper and it doesnt appear to be painted on canvas??? Do you have any knowledge as to the type of painting this is?

    • phayemuss

      August 20, 2010 at 1:19 AM

      Hi Nancy – No, I’m afraid I do not know how it was painted. All I know about the painting has been posted in the several blog posts I’ve done here. Have you read them all? You may want to email the other owners with your questions – some are paintings and some are just prints. I think it was probably copied many times by other artists and amateur artists and was a very painting.

      Thank you for writing.

    • Kimberly Kolbe

      June 6, 2018 at 6:17 PM

      I’m helping a friend research this exact same piece–“Alone and Forsaken,” which seems to be a reverse painting on glass, like what you’re describing, and about the same size. Have you found any more information on yours?

      • phayemuss

        June 7, 2018 at 7:38 AM

        No, sorry, I have not.

  7. mary certoma

    October 7, 2010 at 12:06 PM

    Hi, I have a oil painting, on canvas, dated 1906 & signed O. (or G.) Boimare of this SAME subject, a girl alone in a row boat, with the sun set in the back ground. The signature is on the right side. However, There is a tree painted in on the left side in the fore ground with leaves.

    The realistic style is the same and the mood is fulled with sadness, just as Vosberg. I have never found anything on Boimare and hope someone could help me.

    If you have a comment about this please mention the artist name in the SUBJECT when emailing, or write to Mary, PO Box 42, Chichester, NY 12416.

  8. Susan

    March 25, 2011 at 3:49 PM

    I have this picture, too. 10 x 17. Vosberg signature 1887. I found it in a 5th generation homestead farmhouse. Behind the framed print was a land grant dated October 1, 1857, signed by President James Buchanan for acerage in the Kansas Territory inhabited by the Deleware Indian Tribe. Obtained by the United States through a treaty with the Deleware who maintained residence along with the new landowner on said property. Please don’t hesitate to contact me.

  9. Paul

    March 28, 2011 at 6:44 PM

    I recently obtained this painting and have digital photos that I’d like to share with you. No signature is visible, so I’ve been searching the web to discover who the artist is. It appears to be a very old oil painting measuring 8″ high by 15″ wide and is covered by glass. Water staining appears around the edges of the glass. How may I upload photos to you? Thanks

  10. angie

    September 6, 2011 at 2:47 AM

    I have A reverse painting on glass approx 8″‘x14″ no signature just the word alone written in pencil on the back it is framed with a small link chain around the picture. I really thought it was some thing unique when I purchased it at an auction 10 years or so ago, now it seems it is rather common and not all that valuable . Could you give me any additional info on this piece? Thanks Angie

    • phayemuss

      September 6, 2011 at 7:16 PM

      I have absolutely no idea what the painting is worth and all I know I have posted on my blog….several posts about the Alone painting. One of the posts will have the email addresses of all others who have it. Good luck! :O)

  11. angie

    September 6, 2011 at 2:57 AM

    I purchased a reverse painting on glass approx 10 years ago at an auction no signature, just the word alone written in pencil on the back. framed in a small link chain all around picture which measures 8″x14″. could you provide any info to the possible value? Sorry for the repeat comment I forgot to check comments via e-mail!!

  12. Marie Jose Boulanger

    April 5, 2012 at 6:54 PM

    My Mother painted when she was young and painted her version of this painting. It’s my favorite of all her paintings and I now own it. Have been trying to find out who painted the original when I found this website. Unfortunatly my Mom has Alzheimers and is unable to tell me now where she copied the painting from. She will be 93 this year and probably painted it when she was in her 20’s.

  13. Susan

    June 20, 2012 at 7:11 AM

    I purchased this picture yesterday for $2 at thift store. Original matting with H Vosberg impressed on back of matting and M E Sheahan Publishing Bsoton Mass. They closed in 1909. I love it. Beautiful colors.

    • phayemuss

      June 21, 2012 at 12:09 AM

      Is it a print or an original oil painting? If it is an original oil or appears to be, I would take it to a dealer or appraiser. I believe Vosberg was the original painter. But there are hundreds out there with his name on it. Most are prints. If you have THE original, you could be one rich lady. 🙂

  14. Nicole

    July 15, 2013 at 6:50 PM

    Have the same painting and recently had it restored. It is an oil on canvas 53″x38″. I love it. I inherited it from my grandmother and it hung in her house for her 100 years of life as it was her fathers painting. Our sis unsigned but was appraised at $7,000.

    • Anonymous

      January 23, 2015 at 10:50 AM

      I have a oil painting 17×32 with signed m.e. Fitz jayyoll .can’t find out what its worth.

  15. Dar

    July 16, 2013 at 8:17 AM

    I, too, have an “original” Alone painting, It is reverse glass with a chain frame, painted in somber colors, 8″ X 14″. It came from my grandmother who lived in Philadelphia.

  16. Isidro

    July 17, 2013 at 7:30 PM

    My partner and I stumbled over here by a different web address and thought I may
    as well check things out. I like what I see so i am just following you.
    Look forward to checking out your web page again.

  17. valerie cloutier

    December 16, 2014 at 7:01 PM

    I purchased an old painting, 9 x 17 about 15 years ago at an estate sale. The family traveled in Europe and brought back several paintings. Mine is on a very old stretcher, very dark and dry. the painting has 3 repair patches on back and could use a professional cleaning to lighten her up! To all of us who have an “original” of this painting — Alone and Foresaken, let’s raise a toast to the genius that originally painted the first original! Merry Christmas!

  18. phayemuss

    January 25, 2015 at 10:56 AM

    It’s not worth much, John. There’s hundreds and hundreds, possibly thousands, out there. Did you read all of the postings and comments on my blog relative to this painting?

  19. My

    July 4, 2015 at 7:57 PM

    Sorry for my poor photography/uploading skills but -here you go. This is the version of this exact picture my great-great grandmother painted at the end of the 1800’s. We hadn’t realized it was a copy of someone else’s picture until we saw another copy in a restaraunt. So the question is why was this particular painting so popular that everyone seems to have a version some relative painted? She wasn’t well traveled – I don’t know if she had ever been to the east coast or Europe.

    Here’s her version of the painting – the signature on it is her name, not the artist she copied.

  20. Agnes

    May 22, 2016 at 8:35 PM

    I bought this painting at an antique store in Redlands,CA. It is painted on a piece of wood and framed. It is unsigned. And is such a mystery.

  21. Barbara J Sterritt

    May 30, 2016 at 1:33 PM

    Barb in Hazelton, British Columbia, Canada
    may 30, 2016
    I too am uplifted by this painting as done in oil on board by my Grandmother when a fine arts student at what was then named, Ontario Ladies’ College, Whitby, Ontario, 1890. She chose to title it ” Solitude”. It was framed atop one of the panels in a 4 panel hinged oak floor screen depicting the four seasons.

  22. linda

    September 19, 2016 at 11:55 AM

    I just inherited this painting ….but on the back it says Camella Morelli Dec 24, 1896 “Alone”
    Petaluma, CA Linda

  23. Linda Bowers

    October 19, 2016 at 8:50 AM

    I discovered the cardboard on which a print of ALONE is attached when I took apart a frame owned by my great grandmother (died in 1938) and dearly loved great aunt; she has been gone well over 50 years and I have numerous framed items from her home.. At the top of the print are the words: Art Supplement to The New York Recorder, 1894. In the right hand corner of the print border: by H. Vosberg. Centered at the middle of the print border: ALONE. There is a moon in the sky. The surface of the print appears to have brush strokes, particularly on the boat and the water. Fascinating! Linda B., Columbus, Ohio

  24. Mak

    March 8, 2017 at 4:51 PM

    Hello everyone,

    Ive read some very Interesting commentaries concerning this painting. I just happen to purchase the same painting, it’s an oil painting on canvas dated 1725. Could be the original?? Currently in progress of looking into a reputable art firm to get validation and a professional appraisal done. Will update this site accordingly. Thank!

    Best Regards,
    Mak from NY

  25. Anonymous

    March 12, 2017 at 11:34 AM

    – Quick Follow Up To My Last Post –

    The painting is signed and dated 1725. YES I WROTE 1725! The signature which is located on the bottom right hand corner is slightly difficult to read due to your normal wear and tear of age. I haven’t been able to find this artist online perhaps cause I may be reading it wrong. After researching numerous articles and completing a full visible inspection of the canvas, stretcher bar, framing, I strongly feel that this painting is the original and the artist is NOT Heinrich Vosberg as the majority has claimed. Who knows if the title of this painting is even accurate. It was framed by Oliver & Company. I will be able to verify this painting once examined by a professional.

    Best Regards,
    Mak from NY

    • Fiona

      January 20, 2018 at 10:17 AM

      We have a 24″ x 36″ oil on canvas signed and dated on the bottom right by M. Mullally, 1896. It was bought in the late 60s in Canada. Does anyone know anything about this artist?

  26. Justin Grow

    November 26, 2018 at 3:21 PM

    I’ve had one of these paintings for about a year. I already was aware that others exist. Found it on the Oregon coast. Stretcher bar and frame appear to be turn of the century to slightly earlier…..

    Last week I was visiting family in Florida and visited the Morse museum in Winter Park. There is an antique shop right next door that had an oil on canvas copy. Slightly smaller and not quite as nicely painted.

    • Rhonda Gardner

      April 23, 2019 at 11:20 AM

      We have a very old oil on canvas by artist N. Canonico. Anyone have information on it?


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