Jamestown Historical Society

Connie Armbrust

Click on the images below to see them in our online catalog.

Jamestown is a haven for writers and artists, and one of our treasures was Constance Armbrust, known to everyone as “Connie.” Connie was born November 7, 1907, to Archie and Emily Dearborn Warren in Concord, New Hampshire. She studied art and decorative painting at the Manchester Institute of Arts and Sciences. It was in New Hampshire that she met her future husband, Jamestowner, Henry Armbrust. The couple returned to Jamestown where they raised two children, Peter and Linda (Warner).

In Jamestown, Connie continued her studies with a variety of local artists, venturing into oils, watercolors, pen and ink, and silhouettes. She used her talent to support many Jamestown organizations. When she first arrived in Jamestown, Connie joined the local Women’s Club and began teaching tray painting. As a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution, she used her artistic talents to copy coats of arms for local families who could trace their lineage back to the Revolution. She designed covers for a pamphlet for the RI Federation of Garden Clubs and for the Quononocott Garden Club constitution in 1977. Connie also created posters for events such as the garden club bake sale in July 1983. A member of St. Matthew’s Church, Connie designed a tile to commemorate its 150th anniversary in 1986.

For the Jamestown Tercentenary in 1957, Connie designed a dinner plate showing a map of Jamestown and important sites on the island. During this time Connie spent many hours restoring, painting, and decorating with gold leaf the 1854 Lafrance pumper/steamer for the Jamestown Volunteer Fire Department museum. The Fire Department showed its appreciation for her work with a gift of earrings and a pin made from buttons from an old fireman’s uniform.

Connie’s artwork can be seen in most Jamestown homes, since her sketches are on notecards, coffee cups, tiles, and sweatshirts. In 1976 Vincent Sission, then manager of the Bank of Newport, commissioned Connie to paint a large painting of “Old Jamestown.” The painting still hangs in the Jamestown branch of BankNewport. A very popular color print was made of another of her paintings of East Ferry.

For more on Connie Armbrust and her artwork, click here.

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