Before the Pilgrims sailed for America on the Mayflower, they moved to Leiden in Holland so they could have religious freedom. After a few years they decided they needed to leave because their children had picked up much of the Dutch culture. They were concerned about preserving their English heritage. They left Leiden to go back to England. From there they sailed to America.

My ancestors were part of that group. They sailed to America on the Mayflower. I was excited when my daughter took my wife and me to visit Leiden where our ancestors lived four hundred years ago. We walked the streets and found where they lived. There is a monument dedicated to them.


This painting shows a canal in Leiden. Boats are pulled to the sides. Cars park right at the edge. You can see that I have tried to portray the reflections in the water of the boats, the colorful buildings and the trees. The portrayal of the cars is very simple – just a stripe or two of color.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Comments on Leiden Leave a Comment

November 6, 2007

Robert Hutchings @ 12:19 am #

Your water is very wet! That is a genuine talent! Good work. Nice piece of art.

Todd Fiegel @ 3:08 am #

Every time I’ve seen this painting, my eye is drawn to the white boat that is out of the water. The shape of its reflection draws one’s eye to it.

Like Bob, I love your water, Tom.

Christine @ 8:08 am #

That was very interesting. I did not know that our ancestors ever lived in Leiden or why they would leave there. That is a beautiful painting. Of course, I love any of your paintings that deal with water or reflection.

Jennifer @ 9:41 am #

This place has a lot of sentimental value for me, and the painting completely takes me back there. The water in this painting is absolutely amazing!! It is captivating, and the longer I study it, the more I see within it!

Nicole @ 9:59 am #

Very pretty! I love the trees and the water.

Larraine @ 2:49 pm #

It’s SO BEAUTIFUL! I love the trees, cars, boats and water!

Jean Collard @ 4:03 pm #

You do exceptionally well in depicting reflections in water. We love this picture and are so happy to be able to view your paintings on your web site. Keep up the good work.

Barb @ 7:58 pm #

May I have permission to include a print of this FABULOUS!! painting in the ancestor section of my personal history? I love your work.

November 7, 2007

Jan @ 2:34 am #

Water has such a calming affect. Tom, your depiction of this beautiful place takes me back to a place I fondly recall. In the early 1970s I lived in Wickford, Rhode Island. It was a New England coastal town. Every year, in July, there was an artshow on the boardwalk. That was Americana at its best.

Your painting brings back fond memories of living in beautiful New England and taking long walks near the water. Looking at your work, I can feel the cool breeze, smell the mist, and see clear through the glassy water.
Thank you for sharing your talents, Tom.

Susie @ 11:17 am #

Looking at this painting brings back memories of walking through Amsterdam (a half-hour from Leiden), with its canals and boats, and cars parked at the water’s edge. It was one of my favorite cities when we were in Europe. To know about Leiden’s history in the lives of those who sailed on the Mayflower, makes this even more special.

The reflection in the water is amazing. The way you put in the dark colors and the white lines makes it so realistic. I feel like I could dive right in!

November 12, 2007

Mike Budd @ 1:02 pm #

My ancestors also came from Leiden – Priscilla Cummins was born there. She later married John Alden in the Plymouth colony. We must have talked about this before, but who was your Mayflower ancestor? Do you have a post card copy of this painting?


Tom @ 1:12 pm #

Hello Mike, how interesting that your family was from there as well! My ancestors were John Howland and Elizabeth Tilley and her parents. I’m sorry, I don’t have a post card of the painting.

July 20, 2010

Angel @ 12:31 am #

I like how you made those colors as reflected in the water. Very convincing.

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