Md. Painter 'Absolutely Floored' as Stolen Painting Resurfaces

By Martin Weil
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, August 29, 2009

When her oil painting of one of Maryland's few remaining covered bridges was stolen last year, artist Carol Hutson "felt violated," but this week, she said, she got a call that left her "absolutely floored."

Her painting of the Roddy Road Covered Bridge had been returned, Frederick police said.

How the 18-by-24-inch painting was taken from an exhibition at the Frederick Arts Council is not known. Nothing suspicious was seen or heard, Hutson said. But one day in December, someone realized it was no longer there.

Had someone wanted it but been unable to meet the $2,000 price tag, she said, "I would have given it to them." But having it taken, she said, "infuriated me."

Frederick police said they were contacted Tuesday by an unidentified man who said he had the painting and who then gave it to them.

Police said they did not think the man was involved in the theft.

Hutson, a Frederick County woman who has painted for 25 years, said she has talked to others who have lost paintings and "have never seen them again." She said getting hers back was "absolutely unusual."

The bridge, which was built over Owens Creek near Thurmont about 1850, is said to be one of the two oldest covered bridges in Maryland. At about 39 feet long, it is also said to be the shortest.

The painting of it is now in Hutson's living room. "I feel vindicated," she said. "It's finally back."

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