Artists Alden and Mary Bryan came to Jeffersonville, Vermont for the first time in the late 1930s with a group of artists from the Cape Ann area in Massachusetts. Inspired by the landscape, these artists often visited in the fall, winter, and spring to paint.
Not long after their first visit, the Bryans purchased a farm and land outside Jeffersonville and settled into a rural lifestyle. Alden painted and was involved with entrepreneurial pursuits in the region, and Mary was a fulltime artist. Their son, Alden T. Bryan, remembers riding his pony down the dirt road to the neighbors, and he is glad that the same experience will be possible for generations to come.
On the recommendation of Bill Post, Alden and his son established the Bryan Family Foundation Fund at the Community Foundation. Shortly after his father’s passing in 2001, son Alden T. purchased woodland adjacent to the family property and transferred it, along with other assets from the estate, to the fund.
Though things have changed since the original agreement, today 1,400 acres of the property are conserved, and more than 800 acres are utilized by Alden T.’s son Beckner and his wife Lisa for their sugaring operation. Other assets were used to create two more funds at the Community Foundation: an advised fund for the arts and an agency fund for the Bryan Gallery, a nonprofit organization in Jeffersonville.