The collection is arranged as 15 series: Series 1: Biographical Material, 1917-1986 (Box 1; 0.3 linear ft.) Series 2: Correspondence and Subject Files, circa 1912-1992 (Boxes 1-8, OV 27; 7.2 linear ft.) Series 3: Rockefeller Family Art Collections, circa 1949-1985 (Boxes 8-12, 25; 3.9 linear ft.) Series 4: Rockefeller University Collection, 1923-1984 (Boxes 12-13, OV 27; 1.0 linear ft.) Series 5: Chase Manhattan Bank Collection, 1959-circa 1985 (Boxes 13-14, 26; 1.4 linear ft.) Series 6: Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Art Committee, circa 1965-1987 (Boxes 14-15, OV 27; 0.8 linear ft.) Series 7: Other Corporate and Private Clients, 1968-1984 (Boxes 15-16; 1.3 linear ft.) Series 8: Other Boards, Committees and Commissions, 1925, 1949-1985 (Boxes 16-20; 3.6 linear ft.) Series 9: Works Project Administration Federal Art Project Files, 1935-1979 (Box 20, OV 27; 0.5 linear ft.) Series 10: Edward Hicks Catalog, 1934-1984 (Boxes 20-22; 1.5 linear ft.) Series 11: Research Files, 1930s-1980 (Boxes 22-23; 0.8 linear ft.) Series 12: Exhibition Files, 1932-1986 (Box 23; 0.6 linear ft.) Series 13: Works of Art, circa 1924-circa 1982 (Boxes 23-25; 1.5 linear ft.) Series 14: Photographs, 1926-circa 1970s (Boxes 24-25; 0.3 linear ft.) Series 15: Addition to the Dorothy C. Miller Papers, 1853-2003, bulk 1920-1996 (Boxes 28-38, OVs 39-41; 9.9 linear ft.)
Access Note / Rights:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
The papers of contemporary and folk art curator, historian, and consultant Dorothy C. Miller measure 34.6 linear feet and date from 1853-2013, with the bulk of the material dating from 1920 to 1996. The papers primarily concern Miller's private art consulting work outside of her curatorial work at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City. Found are scattered biographical materials, extensive correspondence and subject files, and project files for her art consulting work for the Rockefeller family, Rockefeller University, Chase Manhattan Bank, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, the World Trade Center, and other miscellaneous corporate and private clients. Miller's work as a trustee and committee member of various public and private boards and commissions is also represented here. Additionally, the papers contain Miller's research files on Edward Hicks and folk art, and a small number of files of her husband Holger Cahill about his work as Director of the Federal Art Project. There is a scattered documentation of Miller's early curatorial work with Holger Cahill on the <em>First Municipal Art Exhibition </em>(1934) held at the RCA Building in Rockefeller Center. Also found is Dorothy Miller's collection of artists' Christmas cards and photographs of Miller and others. An addition to the papers includes biographical material; family papers; correspondence; professional files; art collection and client files; printed material; and photographic material. While a small number professional files are included, the majority of the addition relates to her personal life, including correspondence with her husband Holger Cahill, and files pertaining to her personal art collection.
Dorothy C. Miller papers, 1853-2013, bulk 1920-1996. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Funding for the processing of this collection was provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art
The Archives of American Art holds two oral history interviews with Dorothy C. Miller. The first was conducted by Paul Cummings between May 26, 1970 and September 28, 1971, and details Miller's life from childhood up to, and including, her years at the Museum of Modern Art. The second was conducted by Avis Berman on May 14, 1981 and covers Miller's relationships with Mark Rothko and Clyfford Still. Also found among the holdings of the Archives are the papers of Holger Cahill, Dorothy Miller's husband and colleague.<br /> The Museum of Modern Art Achives holds Dorothy Miller's papers related to her curatorial work at the museum.
Dorothy Canning Miller (1904-2003) worked in New York City as a highly influential curator of contemporary and folk art at the Museum of Modern Art and as the first curator of the museum. Later, she was the primary art consultant for Nelson A. Rockefeller, the Rockefeller family, Rockefeller University, Chase Manhattan Bank, and the Port Authority of and New Jersey. Dorothy Miller was also married to Holger Cahill, director of the WPA Federal Art Project.
Collection is in English.
The collection was donated by Dorothy C. Miller via Wendy Jeffers between 1986 and 1997, and Reid White, Executor of Miller's estate, in 2004. Two subsequent additions were donated by Wendy Jeffers in 2014 and 2015.
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001