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Cameron, Edgar Spier, 1862-1944  Search this
Cameron, Marie Gelon, 1872-1953  Search this
2.8 Linear feet
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
circa 1868-1968
The papers of mural painter and art critic Edgar Spier Cameron measure 2.8 linear feet and date from circa 1868-1968. They detail Cameron's life and career through biographical material, correspondence, personal business records, printed material, photographic material, and artwork.
Scope and Contents:
The Edgar Spier Cameron papers measure 2.8 linear feet and date from circa 1868-1968. Biographical materials include a genealogy report of Cameron's American lineage for The Abridged Compendium of American Genealogy: The Standard Genealogical Encyclopedia of the First Families of America and membership cards for the Chicago Galleries Association for both Edgar and Marie Cameron. Correspondence is between Cameron and his wife Marie Gelon Cameron and with the United States Treasury Department regarding the Paris Exposition of 1900. Personal business records include permission slips for the Century of Progress International Exposition (1933-1934) also known as the Chicago World's Fair, a typescript of Cameron's autobiography The Cusp of Gemini (1940), and copyright records for Cameron's artwork issued by the Library of Congress Copyright Office. Printed material consists of exhibition announcements and catalogs, materials relating to Jean Paul Laurens, a yearbook for the Cliff Dwellers, and various scrapbooks of news clippings. Photographic material contains photographs of Edgar Spier and Marie Gelon Cameron, friends and family, travel, and artwork. Artwork includes sketches, oil sketches, a sketchbook, and various mural panels painted by Cameron.
This collection consists of six series. Series 1: Biographical Material, circa 1925-1938 (.1 Linear feet: Box 1) Series 2: Correspondence, circa 1882-1947 (.9 Linear feet: Box 1) Series 3: Personal Business Records, circa 1900-1940 (.5 Linear feet: Box 2) Series 4: Printed Material, circa 1884-1968 (.4 Linear feet: Box 2) Series 5: Photographic Material, circa 1888-1941 (.4 Linear feet: Boxes 2-4) Series 6: Artwork, circa 1882-1940 (.5 Linear feet: Boxes 3-4, OV 5)
Biographical / Historical:
Edgar Spier Cameron (1862-1944) was a muralist and art critic who worked primarily in Chicago. He was born in Ottawa, Illinois in 1862 and, while growing up, was heavily encouraged to become an artist by his stepmother. In 1882 he joined the Art Students League in New York where Thomas W. Dewing took him on as a student. Prior to 1890 Cameron became a student of renowned French painters Boulanger, Lefebvre, Laurens, and Benjamin Constant alongside his future wife Marie Gelon in Paris. In 1900 he returned to Paris for the Paris Exposition where he won the silver medal. Before dedicating his time strictly to art, Cameron was also an art critic for the Chicago Tribune. Cameron, among others, was commissioned to work on the cyclorama The Chicago Fire which started his path of painting murals, after which he became one of the most successful muralists in the Midwest. Many buildings in Chicago as well as throughout the Midwest are decorated with Cameron's murals including an Oklahoma City bank and the Flint, Michigan Courthouse, Cameron's final project. Cameron died in Illinois in 1944.
The Edgar Spier Cameron microfilmed materials on reels 4290-4292 and papers were donated to the Archives of American Art by Arthur B. Carpenter and Marjorie L. Kimberlin, Cameron's nephew and niece, in 1988.
This collection is open for research. Access to original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center.
The Archives of American Art makes its archival collections available for non-commercial, educational and personal use unless restricted by copyright and/or donor restrictions, including but not limited to access and publication restrictions. AAA makes no representations concerning such rights and restrictions and it is the user's responsibility to determine whether rights or restrictions exist and to obtain any necessary permission to access, use, reproduce and publish the collections. Please refer to the Smithsonian's Terms of Use for additional information.
Muralists -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Painters -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Art critics -- Illinois -- Chicago  Search this
Edgar Spier Cameron papers, circa 1868-1968 Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
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Edgar Spier Cameron papers
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Archives of American Art