Saturday, February 21, 2009

Grace and Gratitude

In 1918, an elderly man named Charles Wilden entered the photographic studio of Eric Enstrom in Bovey, Minnesota, and a photograph was taken which became world-famous. The photograph taken by Enstrom, showing Wilden praying over his meal, was titled "Grace." Enstrom's daughter, Mrs. Rhoda Nyberg, later created a hand-painted version, and the scene became so popular, as it expressed the theme of contentedness and thankfulness for the simple things in life, that it was reproduced throughout the world. This iconic image (which is in the public domain) is, as of 2002, Minnesota's state photograph.

In the 1960's, at the behest of Edmund L. Dickson, a companion photograph (which is copyrighted) was made by Jack Garren of Centralia, Illinois, showing Mrs. Myrtle Copple, Garren's grandmother, praying over a similar scene. This image, which is often paired with the other, is called "Gratitude."

Together, the two pictures represent "Grace" and "Gratitude" or the free gifts of God's provision combined with thankful receiving hearts.


  1. A small reminder to an affirmatively Virginian Huguenot (French Reformed?) that "Grace" was photographed by a Swedish Augustana Lutheran from Minnesota; probably the same of the subject. (I am neither Swedish, Augustana nor a Minnesotan.)

  2. Do you know where I can get a copy of "Gratitude" in 8x10? I have "Grace" and want to get the other. Thanks Sharon

  3. Hi Sharon -- They sell "Gratitude" in several sizes here, including 7.5 x 10 -- I hope that will help. Blessings!

  4. i had this picture print when I was a kid, but we don't have it anymore... it's such a wonderful moving picture.