Manuscript Collections

Manuscript collections in The Frick Collection and Frick Art Reference Library Archives consist primarily of art research files, gallery records, photographs of artists, and artists’ correspondence and personal papers that were donated to the Frick Art Reference Library. The research files of art scholars contain correspondence, photographs, notes, and printed material and include documentation of such artists as Gilbert Stuart and Gian Paolo Panini, as well as general research on early American artists and Western European art. The records of two galleries, the American Art Association, and Peter H. Davidson & Co., Inc., contain sales records, inventories, correspondence, and photographs of artwork. Artists are documented through collections of photographs and letters, photographs of artists in their studios, and papers of two artists, Charles Hawthorne and Raymond P. R. Neilson.


Below is a current list of Manuscript Collections, each with a brief description and links to the finding aid and catalog record when available.



Hesselius Family Papers, 1780–1822

Correspondence of the descendants of Gustave Hesselius, including his granddaughter, Elizabeth Henderson Wertmuller, her mother, Lydia Hesselius Henderson, and her aunt Mary Hesselius, as well as other relatives, concerning personal and business matters.

Images of Artists Collection, circa 1800s–1900s

Collection of images of nearly two hundred artists, including Paul Cézanne, Edgar Degas, Jacob Maris, Edvard Munch, and Auguste Rodin.

Anna Kleinman Research Files on Rosalba Carriera, undated

Typescript photocopies of the English translations of the correspondence and diary of Rosalba Carriera (1675–1757), prominent Venetian Rococo portraitist. Also includes explanatory footnotes, biographical sketches of correspondents, and microfilm of the original documents.

John Hill Morgan Research Files, 1922–1944

Correspondence, photographs, notes, printed material, and some drafts of John Hill Morgan’s writings on George Washington portraits and other early American paintings. Also contains information on the George J. Shepard/John J. Hughes/Ferdinand Danton fakes.

Raymond P. R. Neilson Papers, circa 1930s–1950s

Diaries, notebooks, and other notes regarding the work of New York City portraitist, still-life painter, and art instructor Raymond P. R. Neilson. The collection also includes some correspondence regarding portrait commissions.

Lawrence Park Diary, 1923

Lawrence Park's diary of the Frick Art Reference Library photographing expedition to South Carolina in the spring of 1923.

Lawrence Park Research Files on Gilbert Stuart, 1920–1924

Correspondence concerning the provenance and authentication of paintings by Gilbert Stuart used in Park's publication, Gilbert Stuart: An Illustrated Descriptive List of His Works (1926).

Photographs of Artists in Their Studios, circa 1885–1890

Seventy-four photographs of artists in their studios from the collection of artist Frank Stokes, including Léon Durand Bonnat, Henri-Joseph Harpignies, Anna Elizabeth Klumpke, Jean-Paul Laurens, and Madeleine Jeanne Lemaire.

J. Hall Pleasants Research Files, 1924–1959

Correspondence with Frick Art Reference Library staff and copies of the research notes of J. Hall Pleasants, an authority on early Maryland painters and their works.

William Suhr Conservation Ledgers, 1938–1957

Two ledgers recording William Suhr’s conservation work for The Frick Collection and other prominent museums, collectors, and dealers from 1938 to 1957. Each entry consists of the date work was begun, the owner’s name, the artist and title of the work, conservation treatment performed, the amount charged, and the date completed.




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