The Morning Meal

George Philip Sauter - Morning Meal

Do you recognize this photograph?  Many Christian Scientists may know that it was taken in the 1950s by George Philip Sauter — and that it has an interesting story behind it.  A friend of the BA, David Horn of Raleigh, North Carolina, told us the following:

“…here’s what I discovered after speaking with folks at the art museum in Glens Falls, NY a few years ago, and doing additional research:

“In 1950, George Philip Sauter was a well-known photographer in scenic Glens Falls, New York. Several of his “mural” photos are still on display at the local historical museum today.
For almost two years, he tried in vain to photograph birds outside his window, for a snapshot to be used on a book cover. At first, only a few birds were drawn to the seeds, but eventually a flock of more than 100 evening grosbeaks landed in his yard. Yet none of the photos he took of them seemed satisfactory, and the flock migrated away.

“In early 1952, as the grosbeaks returned, he re-considered his purpose for the picture. He changed the focus from birds eating seeds to the Pastor of Christian Science — The Bible, and Science and Health by Mary Baker Eddy. He placed these books near the window, with the Quarterly open to the Bible Lesson on “Love.” He carefully arranged the curtain and lighting, hoping to create “the soft, subtle light of a new day.” Again, hundreds of exposures were made, and on February 2, 1952, the well-known picture was snapped. George named it “The Morning Meal” and advertised it in the The Christian Science Monitor. Within a few years, it could be seen on the walls of a Christian Science Reading Rooms and practitioner’s offices from coast to coast.”


13 Responses to The Morning Meal

  1. Marilyn Stanford says:

    Is there any way to get a copy of this picture? There had been one in my family and it has some very special memories for me.

  2. emoller says:

    We’re so glad you enjoyed seeing this post on The Morning Meal.
    We have not been able to locate any current sources for copies of this photograph, but you may want to call some of the photo galleries in Glens Falls, New York, or search on the Internet for sellers. Or you may want to contact Longyear Museum — they may have some resources on this picture.

  3. Carol Thorman says:

    I hope the following information will be helpful: Daystar Foundation & Library, Oklahoma City, OK, has obtained the copyright for this photograph. From what I have been told, Daystar will be selling it in different formats, including note cards, through its gift shop. You may find it helpful to contact Daystar via its website in order to obtain more information:

  4. cord turner says:

    If any one wishes to purchase my signed copy call me at 620-474-3872

  5. Rob Scott says:

    I found mine on E-bay.

    I was unemployed at the time because honesty leveled wealth.

    The seller originally put it up for auction for the highest bidder.

    But after telling her how much CS meant to me she took it off auction and sold it to me at the starting price. She seemed moved by my sincerity.

    I even wrote about it in my blog post for today.

    Special hello to “Daystar”!

    Truth, Wisdom, Love and Sincerity, to ALL Mankind,

    Rob Scott
    Boothbay Harbor, Maine

    p.s. Hope that painting of Mrs. Eddy has finally been restored and is back in the lobby of the BA for ALL to enjoy

    • Janiva Toler says:

      Dear Rob,
      Thank you for your comment. We do have plans to restore the painting of Mrs. Eddy but as yet the restoration work is unfunded. Once the work is completed we will let everyone know.

      • Rob Scott says:

        Perhaps you start a special fund to raise money for the repair ($2000)?

        I know people would be eager to contribute to this particular portrait.

        Her portrait doesn’t belong in a closet.

        During my first visit I came down in the middle of the night in my pj’s and it felt comforting to see the portrait over the fireplace.

        You can’t separate the discover and the discovery.

        Love you, Mrs. Eddy! Look for you in your writings and hopefully see you back in the lobby of the BA where your portrait belongs.

        Truth, Wisdom, Love and Sincerity, to ALL Mankind,

        Rob Scott
        Boothbay Harbor, Maine

  6. Pam says:

    I have recently acquired a signed photo of “The Morning Meal”, how much is it worth?

    • pwoodsum says:

      Hi Pam,
      I’m sorry, but we don’t have information available on the value of that photograph. Perhaps you could try a local art dealer?

  7. Cindy says:

    I love this picture. I found mine in a thrift store in a frame with the mat imprinted “The Morning Meal” and on the back in ink it’s stamped Mrs. George P. Sauter.
    It’s such a peaceful photograph.

  8. Tom says:

    I have an original framed copy. My early Sunday School years were at the church in Glens Falls, and Mrs Sauter ()the photographer’s wife) was the Sunday School organist/pianist. I don’t know whether my mother bought it or received it as a gift, but I do remember hearing the story about how the picture came to be — which would have been a few years before I was there.

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