Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
The papers of Edward Gay and the Gay family measure 2.6 linear feet and date from 1852 to 1983. Found within the papers are biographical materials on Edward and Duncan Gay; personal correspondence from Edward Gay, his wife Martha Feary Gay, and other family members; artwork by Edward and Duncan Gay; writings; printed materials; and photographic materials of Edward and Duncan Gay, their family, and their work.
Papers of Edward Gay include legal documents; family and business correspondence, including correspondence from fellow artists; writings, including reminiscences by Martha Gay; printed materials; artwork, including one sketchbook; a small selection of business papers related to the Artists' Fund Society; and photographs of Edward and Martha Gay, their homes, and Gay's artwork. Papers of Duncan Gay include biographical materials; family correspondence; printed material; artwork, including three sketchbooks and sketches of house plans; and photographic materials of Duncan Gay, his travels, and his artwork.
Gay family papers consist primarily of correspondence to Ingovar Gay and Helen Gay Learned, and photographs of the Gay family, extended family members, and friends.
Edward Gay and Gay family papers, 1852-1983. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
The bulk of the collection was digitized in 2016 and is available on the Archives of American Art's website. Materials which have not been scanned include blank pages, blank versos of photographs, and duplicates. In some cases, exhibition catalogs and other publications have had their covers, title pages, and relevant pages scanned.
Funding for digitization of the Edward Gay and Gay Family Papers was made possible by a gift from Edward Gay's descendants Gay Fort Boswell, Wickie Fort Bridgforth, Melanie Fort Christian, Caleb Fort, Edward Fort, Hamlet Fort, James Fort, William Fort, Claudia Fort Heath, Jack Linville, and Jim Linville, in memory of Daniel Wilkins Fort.
Landscape painter Edward Gay (1837-1928) lived and worked in Mount Vernon and Cragsmoor, New York and was known for his works depicting the local countryside of upstate New York and the Hudson River Valley. Edward was born in Dublin, Ireland. He moved to the United States in 1848. He studied art in Albany, New York and Karlsruhe, Germany. Member of the Artists Fund Society, National Academy of Design, and the Lotos Club. He exhibited in museums and galleries throughout America and he painted murals for public libraries in Mt. Vernon and Bronxville, New York.
The papers were donated in separate accessions beginning in 1959 by Edward Gay's daughter, Dorothy Gay Gordon. Additional materials on Edward Gay were donated by Gay's grandson, Richard G. Coker, in 1974. From 1983 to 1995, materials on Edward and Duncan Gay and the Gay family were donated by Susanne G. Linville, Duncan Gay's daughter.
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001