Rockwell’s Home for Thanksgiving to be auctioned by MA American Legion

Vietnam veteran Gordon Haskins stands beside a reproduction of the Norman Rockwell painting “Home for Thanksgiving” at American Legion Post 193 in Winchendon. The original painting owned by the Post 193 is scheduled to be auctioned off on Friday.

WINCHENDON — The painting by an iconic American artist hung above the foyer stairs at the Eugene M. Connor American Legion Post 193 for decades. Officials assumed the artwork — “Home for Thanksgiving” by Norman Rockwell — was merely a reproduction of the famed artist’s original 1945 painting, which depicts a soldier and his mother sitting in chairs and peeling potatoes, a pumpkin resting on the floor near the woman’s feet.

Years later, experts revealed that it was the real thing.

The Legion post acquired the painting in 1959 from a local priest, the Rev. Wilfrid Tisdell, who donated the artwork along with $500 in the hopes it could be used to help Legion officials who were in the process of moving from their original location on Central Street into a new building on School Street.

Sixty-two years later, facing dwindling membership, expensive repairs and possible closure, Legion officials have decided to sell the famous artwork, which experts have determined has appreciated in value to between $4 million and $7 million.

The close-up of Norman Rockwell's "Home for Thanksgiving" a reproduction of the original at the Eugene M. Connor American Legion Post 193 in Winchendon that has since been moved to safe keeping.

When will the Norman Rockwell painting be auctioned?

The painting is scheduled be auctioned off by Heritage Auctions at 11 a.m. Friday, and can be viewed online at It is Auction 8058, Lot 67161.

How did the Winchendon American Legion get Rockwell’s ‘Home for Thanksgiving’?

Charles E. Grout, a World War II veteran, was invited to select a painting from Tisdell’s art collection. According to Coral May Grout, her father, who died in 2003, selected the painting because it brought to mind people he knew very well in the community.

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