Frick Family Papers

The papers of the Frick family date from the 1860s to the 1980s and consist of correspondence, photographs, albums and scrapbooks, diaries, financial records, printed material, and architectural records documenting the lives of Henry Clay Frick, his wife, Adelaide, and their children, Helen Clay Frick and Childs Frick. These materials give valuable insight into the history of the Frick family and members of their circle, which included politicians, art dealers, business leaders, university officials, fellow art collectors, and philanthropists.

 

Some notable figures represented in these papers are Andrew W. Mellon, Theodore Roosevelt, Andrew Carnegie, Joseph Duveen, and J. Horace Harding. The collection also documents the family’s own art collecting and their philanthropic interests, which ranged from museums and educational institutions to hospitals and parks.

 

Below is a list of collections comprising the Frick Family Papers, each with a brief description and links to the finding aids and catalog records when available.

 

Art Collecting Files of Henry Clay Frick, 1881-1925

Henry Clay Frick (1849-1919), a Pittsburgh coke and steel industrialist, began forming his art collection in 1881, and continued to acquire works of art until his death in 1919. He bequeathed his New York City residence, furnishings, and art collection to be established as a public art gallery called The Frick Collection, which opened to the public in December 1935.

Frick Family Photographs, circa 1850s-1989, undated

Includes prints and negatives depicting family members, friends and other acquaintances, travel, pets, residences, artwork, furnishings, and building projects in New York, Pittsburgh, and Massachusetts. Encompasses a range of photographic formats and processes, including cartes de visites, cabinet cards, tintypes, cyanotypes, and albumen prints, as well as the work of many prominent studio photographers.

Frick Family Papers

The papers of the Frick family date from the 1860s to the 1980s and consist of correspondence, photographs, albums and scrapbooks, diaries, financial records, printed material, and architectural records documenting the lives of Henry Clay Frick, his wife Adelaide, and their children, Helen Clay Frick and Childs Frick. These materials give valuable insight into the history of the Frick family and members of their circle, which included politicians, art dealers, business leaders, university officials, fellow art collectors, and philanthropists.

One East 70th Street Papers, 1907–1931

Consists of correspondence, estimates, contracts, construction specifications, bills, vouchers, and inventories chiefly detailing the construction and furnishing of the Frick residence at One East 70th Street in New York. Post-construction materials relate to daily life in the house, proposed alterations to the residence, and contents of the house on the death of Henry Clay Frick.

Clayton Papers, 1884–1982

Consists of correspondence, estimates, bills, receipts, contracts, printed material, inventories, and appraisals pertaining to the Frick family's Pittsburgh residence. These papers document two generations of ownership by the family, and include materials on alterations and improvements to the house, furnishings and redecoration, staff, and daily operation of the house and grounds.

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