Joseph Pearson, a former student of Julian Alden Weir’s, in a letter to Dorothy Weir Young, reminiscing about her father at Branchville:
Few artists of character I have known have escaped the diverting effect of the purchase and development of run down property. Your father was no exception. He had much property. It was lovely. It charmed him. He gave much thought, time and energy to its improvement. How he enjoyed clearing vistas, trimming trees well up from the ground revealing beautiful notes and things unseen before. The making of level places for tennis, working with his men who used great red oxen to haul the boulders to one side; the building of the pond with prize money, some of which was generously shared with employees; piling brush here and there and making a bon-fire now and then when the boy in him suggested it.... The things made by the faithful Paul [the farmer] found a place in his pictures: sapling fences, rustic arbors and bridges as well as hen runs, and informal gardens.