The Dam Wood

Impression: Freer Gallery of Art
Freer Gallery of Art
Number: 133
Date: 1874/1875
Medium: drypoint
Size: 177 x 113 mm
Signed: butterfly at right (3-final)
Inscribed: no
Set/Publication: no
No. of States: 4
Known impressions: 11
Catalogues: K.145; M.143; W.120
Impressions taken from this plate  (11)


landscape, tree, wood.


Variations on the title are as follows:

'The Dam Wood' (1877, Whistler). 2
'Trees (near Speke)' (1881, Union League Club). 3
'The Dam Wood' (1886, Frederick Wedmore (1844-1921)). 4
' "Dam" Wood' (1887/1888, Whistler). 5
'Dam Wood' (1889, Whistler). 6
'The Dam Wood / Near Speke Hall' (1903/1935, possibly Rosalind Birnie Philip (1873-1958)). 7

'The Dam Wood' is the original and generally accepted title. It refers to a wood near Speke Hall, Liverpool.

2: Whistler to C. A. Howell, 12 October-5 November [1877], GUW #12735.

3: New York 1881 (cat. no. 139).

4: Wedmore 1886 A (cat. no. 120).

5: List, [1887/1888], GUW #13233.

6: List, 18 July 1889, GUW #13235.

7: Envelope containing copper plate, Hunterian Art Gallery.


In the foreground is a group of young slender trees, with a meadow beyond and a wood in the distance, under a cloudy sky.


Whistler wrote 'near Speke -' on one impression of the etching (Graphic with a link to impression #K1450106). There is a Dam Wood Road at Speke, near Speke Hall, near Liverpool, in north-west England.