RHODcast: Jun 10, 2021
Slowly, the idea of a series about essential New England is taking shape. And where better to continue the tales of Our Town that began with the no-longer-neglected painter JOJ Frost than by communing with the dead of Marblehead, Massachusetts?
I am reminded of the famous prologue to Act Three of Thornton Wilder’s great American play in which the dead take a fairly disinterested view of the activities of the living. They are “weaned away from the earth” says Wilder’s omniscient Stage Manager. I hope you will join me as I call upon the town’s emeritus historian, the irrepressible BETTE HUNT, to guide me through some of the town’s most famous stories through the looking glass of headstones (and footstones) on Old Burial Hill.
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An extraordinary gamble in early 2020 made RICK BOYD rich. But since we spoke back in March of 2021, it’s been a torrid spring for Bitcoin investors. Would you be OK with it? Is he? And whatever happened after HEATHER CAIRNS realized some of the torrent of wealth that came her way when Google went public? It’s all about risk, after all.
It all began with… a Chinese dinner? Or did it begin when HEATHER CAIRNS would invigilate the tests taken by two “child prodigy” graduate students in the engineering faculty at Stanford. Anyway, one thing led to another. Heather eventually returned to her home town on Boston’s North Shore where people still call her The Google Lady.
He tried to hawk them from his wheelbarrow and even built a backyard museum for them without success. After his death some of his paintings were used as building material by his cash-strapped son. And yet as his huge output of historically significant work became better known in the 1950s, “a pretty big shadow” was cast over the art of JOJ Frost. What prevented people who owned his paintings from coming forward? Rhod hears from one of the mother and daughter team who have done more than anyone to try to bring the rest of Frost’s surviving “canvases” to light.
Who hid the painting in the wall of that old house? Rhod delves into the story of the eccentric artist JOJ Frost, who tried unsuccessfully to sell his pictures from a wheelbarrow, and whose paintings were worth less during the Depression than the boards they were painted on. Yet he left an incomparable account of a vanished way of life. And his paintings keep on turning up.