The collection is arranged into 6 series: Series 1: Biographical Material, 1888-circa 1955 (Box 1; 5 folders) Series 2: Correspondence, 1899-1955 (Box 1; 0.25 linear feet) Series 3: Artwork, circa 1910 (Box 1; 1 folder) Series 4: Writings and Notes, circa 1900-1908 (Box 1; 3 folders) Series 5: Printed Material, 1907-1913 (Box 1; 3 folders) Series 6: Photographs, circa 1900-1911 (Box 1; 2 folders)
Access Note / Rights:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
The papers of painter and activist William Robert Pearmain (1888-1912) and the Pearmain family measure 0.4 linear feet and date from 1888-1955. Papers are found for William Robert Pearmain, his wife Nancy Douglas Brush (later Bowditch), their daughter Mary "Polly" Pearmain, and other members of the Pearmain family. There are biographical materials; family correspondence; a watercolor; a travel diary and school essays by Pearmain; printed materials, including clippings and two publications by the Industrial Workers of the World; and photographs of the Pearmain family and artwork.
William Robert Pearmain and Pearmain family papers, 1888-1955. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
The papers of William Robert Pearmain in the Archives of American Art were digitized in 2010, and total 666 images.
Material lent for microfilming is available on 35mm microfilm reel 4859 at the Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan.
Funding for the processing and digitization of this collection was provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art
Also found in the Archives of American Art is the Nancy Douglas Bowditch papers, circa 1900s-1970s that contain materials relating to her first husband, William Robert Pearmain and an oral history interview with Nancy Douglas Bowditch conducted on January 30, 1974 by Robert F. Brown. That Archives of American Art also holds material lent for microfilming (reel 4589) including a drawing by Will Loring of William Robert Pearmain as a child. This item was returned to the lender and is not described in the collection container inventory.
William Robert Pearmain (1888-1912), known as Robert, was a painter and political activist working in Boston and New York City. Born to a wealthy family in New England, Pearmain attended Harvard University to study architecture and studied painting in Italy under George de Forest Brush.
Nancy Bowditch and Edward F. McClennen, Pearmain's widow and grandson, donated the William Robert Pearmain and Pearmain family papers in 1973 and 1974. The photograph of the drawing on microfilm reel 4859 was lent for microfilming by William Robert Pearmain, Pearmain's nephew, in 1974.
The papers of William Robert Pearmain in the Archives of American Art were digitized in 2010. The papers have been scanned in their entirety, and total 666 images.
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001