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Catalog Data

Thomas, Alma, 1891-1978  Search this
Thomas, Alma, 1891-1978  Search this
Thomas, J. Maurice (John Maurice)  Search this
Tarbary, Celine  Search this
Sarg, Tony  Search this
Taylor, Joshua Charles  Search this
Johnson, Nathalie J. Cole  Search this
Bader, Franz  Search this
Breeskin, Adelyn Dohme  Search this
Martha Jackson Gallery  Search this
Art in Embassies Program (U.S.)  Search this
Video recordings
Place of publication, production, or execution:
United States
Physical Description:
5.5 Linear feet
The papers have been arranged into 8 series: Series 1: Biographical Material, 1911-2001 (Box 1; 0.5 linear feet) Series 2: Letters, circa 1930-2001 (Boxes 1-2; 0.6 linear feet) Series 3: Notes and Writings, circa 1920s-circa 1998 (Box 2; 0.7 linear feet) Series 4: Exhibition Files, 1951-2000 (Boxes 2-3, OV 7; 0.8 linear feet) Series 5: Personal Business Records, circa 1950s-1994 (Box 3; 0.2 linear feet) Series 6: Printed Material, circa 1908-2000 (Boxes 3-5, OV 7; 1.8 linear feet) Series 7: Scrapbooks, 1930-1946 (Box 5; 0.3 linear feet) Series 8: Photographs, circa 1894-2001 (Boxes 5-6; 0.6 linear feet)
Access Note / Rights:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate copies requires advance notice.
The papers of Washington, D.C. painter and art educator Alma Thomas, date from circa 1894-2001 and measure 5.5 linear feet. The papers document Thomas's work as a teacher, and her development and success as a painter of the Washington Color School, through biographical material, letters, notes and writings, personal business records, exhibition files, printed materials, scrapbooks, photographs, an audio recording, and two video recordings.
Alma Thomas papers, circa 1894-2001. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Additional Forms:
The bulk of the collection was digitized in 2018 and is available on the Archives of American Art website. Materials which have not been digitized include blank pages, blank versos of photographs, family photographs not picturing Thomas, and duplicates. In some cases, exhibition catalogs and other publications have had their covers, title pages, and relevant pages digitized. Some publications have not been digitized.
The sound recording in the collection has been digitized for research access and is available at Archives of American Art offices. Researchers may view the original cassette for the archival notations on it, but the original cassette is not available for playback due to fragility.
Materials lent for microfilming are available on 35mm microfilm reels 1541-1543 at the Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan.
Funding for the processing and digitization of the Alma Thomas paper is provided by The Walton Family Foundation and The Friends of Alma Thomas
Use Note:
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.
Related Materials:
In 1979, J. Maurice Thomas loaned papers for microfilming. Most, but not all, of the loaned material was later donated and is described in this finding aid. Loaned materials not donated at a later date are available on reels 1541-1543 and are not described in the container listing of this finding aid.
Biography Note:
Washington, D.C. painter and art educator Alma Thomas (1891-1978) was known for her abstract paintings filled with dense patterns of color, and was considered a major artist of the Washington Color School.
Language Note:
English .
J. Maurice Thomas, the artist's sister, loaned portions of the collection for microfilming in 1979. Most, but not all of this material was then later donated in several accretions by J. Maurice Thomas, between 1979 and 2004. Charles Thomas Lewis, Thomas' nephew, gave additional papers in 2010.
Digitization Note:
This site provides access to the papers of Alma Thomas in the Archives of American Art that were digitized in 2018, and total 6,741 images.
Location Note:
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001
Painting, American  Search this
African American artists  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Washington Color School (Group of artists)  Search this
Women educators  Search this
Women painters  Search this
African American  Search this
Lives of American Artists  Search this
Women  Search this
Record number:
African American
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art