Archive for March 18th, 2019

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Professor Bishop has been living in my husband’s closet for close to 13 years.  Our retired diocesan bishop, Willis Henton, died in February of 2006, and Jeff was in charge of his succession.  One day the new owners of Bishop Henton’s home called Jeff about a portrait in the shed.

Jeff called the son of Bishop Henton who was living in Texas.  The son said that it was an academic portrait of David Bishop, father of Martha Bishop Henton and chairman of the English Department at the University of Mississippi. The family had disliked the portrait so much they had it replaced. The original portrait was the one exiled to the shed. The Henton’s son told Jeff to throw the portrait away, but Jeff couldn’t bring himself to do that.  He put it in his closet.

Last week an artist stayed with us during her participation in the Shadows Plein Air competition.  Low and behold, she was from Oxford, MS, the original home of the portrait.  Some years ago, Jeff had discovered that the owner of an independent bookstore in Oxford was the grandson of Professor Bishop, so he contacted him about the portrait and promised that we would one day travel there and deliver Professor Bishop to him. Alas, that trip never happened.

However, Debbie was more than happy to deliver the portrait for us.  Jeff spent the morning on Saturday reframing (Mr. Bishop had fallen out of the frame) and packaging him up for the long drive to Oxford.

Jeff mentioned the new space in his closet.  We kind of miss that old man already, but we are happy he is on his way back to his family.  We still hope to visit Oxford some day to check out Square Books and visit Professor Bishop and our new artist friend.

Jeff proudly holds Professor Bishop after reframing him.

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