Edith “Jimmie” Ware arrived in Arden in 1906 – almost at the very beginning of the communities now known as the Ardens. Very little seems to be known about the origin of her very boyish nickname, but the woman herself was an admired artist and a valued friend and neighbor. She was only 18 when she moved to Arden and was soon involved in the weekly Shakespeare performances that took place in the Field Theatre. In 1917, she married Hamilton D. “Buzz” Ware. According to her 1983 obituary, “…the pair became outstanding leaders in the comprehensive cultural development of the village…” The wedding must have been a grand Arden celebration – among the gifts they received was a set of silver teaspoons and a silver mug, made by village silversmith Margaret Wood. The family grew to include daughter Joan in March 1919 and twins James and John in December 1924.
Notwithstanding all her activities, as well as raising a family; Ware found time to paint. In a review of her show at the Warehouse Gallery in 1968, Betty Burroughs (a newspaper columnist who also lived in Arden) wrote that many of Ward’s watercolors showed her love of the nature. There were pansies, pussy willows, and apple blossoms; as well as seascapes from Maine. The column also quotes Joan Ware Colgan, Ware’s daughter, discussing the abstract paintings that appear in the show. Colgan explained that her Mother disliked the early abstract work when she first saw it and framed her color-splattered paint cloth as a rebuff to those artists. Burroughs reported that even Ware’s abstracts found acceptance due to her “…fine sense of color.” Ware’s work continues to be treasured in many homes in the Ardens.