The University of Massachusetts Amherst
Special Collections & University Archives
CredoResearch digital collections in Credo

Hamilton, Phyllis

(Not fully processed)

Phyllis Hamilton Sketch Collection

1970-1989
1 box 2 linear feet
Call no.: MS 752
Depiction of Phyllis Hamilton, Brotherhood of the Spirit, 1971
Phyllis Hamilton, Brotherhood of the Spirit, 1971

Phyllis Hamilton was a recently divorced mother of a young daughter when she joined the Brotherhood of the Spirit in 1970. Encouraged to visit the commune by two young friends, Phyllis was attracted to the spiritual values of the group and relocated herself and her daughter from Worcester to Heath, making her at the age of 40 one of the oldest members of the community. She quickly used her more mature demeanor and appearance to the group’s advantage. In an area where realtors were increasingly reluctant to work with “hippies,” Phyllis was able to negotiate and purchase the Warwick property with the assistance of another member; together they signed the deed over to the Brotherhood after the sale was final. Her age was not her only distinction, however, she was also an artist, and used her artistic capabilities to capture the familiar faces of her fellow commune members.

The collection consists of 146 sketches of members of the Brotherhood of the Spirit (renamed the Renaissance Community in 1974) from 1970-1989. About half of the drawings were identified by the artist’s daughter, the others are of unidentified individuals.

Subjects

Brotherhood of the Spirit (Commune)Communal living--Massachusetts

Contributors

Hamilton, Phyllis

Types of material

Sketches