Building Community - Edward La Salle's 1940 Illustrated Map Painting of Falmouth


This painting was originally located in the library of Falmouth's first high school, known today as the Plummer School. It has hung in Town Hall since the 1990s.

In the painting, thirty circular vignettes depicting historic places and structures dot a map of Falmouth as the real places dot the landscape of our community. Edward La Salle, a Portland-based illustrator who studied at the Portland School of Art, conceptualized Falmouth’s history in a format not found in any other known work of public art in Maine. The painting is a visually interesting and beautifully rendered work connecting artistic expression to historical context by underscoring the power of place in our lives and the life of a community over time.

Thanks to the generosity of Southworth International Group, Inc., the Morton-Kelly Charitable Trust, and the Town of Falmouth, the painting was restored and reframed during 2018 and 2019. The Town of Falmouth published an accompanying publication—Building Community: Edward La Salle’s 1940 Illustrated Map Painting of Falmouth, Maine—with the help of many community volunteers. It tells the painting’s story an that of Falmouth—a story of growth, change, and community . . . a story that continues to this day.

On June 14, 2019 the Town held a Book Launch and Celebration marking the restoration of the painting and the publication telling its story. Free copies of Building Community are available at Falmouth Town Hall, Falmouth Memorial Library, Falmouth Historical Society, and Falmouth Central Fire Station.