Flatfile Collection

Artist Statement

I started taking pictures at the Congdon Sawmill in Lyme, CT in 1973 and have continued photographing there ever since.  As this sawmill struggles to survive, I’ve photographed the work there, its tools and machinery, its customers and friends.

The woodsmen are shy people—often feeling, I am sure, ragged and out of place, though at other times proud and well aware of their place beside the tree.  I compensate for my intrusion by doing sawmill labor.  This makes the situation more acceptable for them and myself, and it’s helped me learn the saw.

The place has been a great sanctuary for me.  It allowed me to go back in time as best as can be done—something I needed to do.  The Congdon sawmill has connected me to a rural American spirit of which I have always wanted to be a part.