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William Robert Pearmain

Artist:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch, 1890 - 1979  Search this
Sitter:
William Robert Pearmain, 1888 - 1912  Search this
Medium:
Graphite possibly on paper
Dimensions:
Sheet (estimate): 24 × 15cm (9 7/16 × 5 7/8")
Type:
Drawing
Date:
1912
Topic:
Costume\Dress Accessory\Tie  Search this
William Robert Pearmain: Visual Arts\Artist  Search this
William Robert Pearmain: Male  Search this
William Robert Pearmain: Society and Social Change\Reformer\Activist  Search this
Portrait  Search this
Credit Line:
Owner: Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution
Object number:
8781 AAA
Restrictions & Rights:
Usage conditions apply
Copyright:
SI/Archives of American Art website: rights statement U.S. public domain.
See more items in:
Catalog of American Portraits
Data Source:
Catalog of American Portraits
GUID:
http://n2t.net/ark:/65665/sm4807ed1bc-0f4b-4c30-ab22-a1dd4cfab823
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:npg_8781_AAA

Oral history interview with Nancy Douglas Bowditch

Interviewee:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas  Search this
Interviewer:
Brown, Robert F.  Search this
Names:
Brush, George de Forest, 1855-1941  Search this
Faulkner, Barry, 1881-1966  Search this
Pearmain, William Robert, 1888-1912  Search this
Saint-Gaudens, Augustus, 1848-1907  Search this
Thayer, Abbott Handerson, 1849-1921  Search this
Twain, Mark, 1835-1910  Search this
Volk, Douglas , 1856-1935  Search this
Extent:
28 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1974 January 30
Scope and Contents:
An interview of Nancy Douglas Bowditch conducted 1974 January 30, by Robert F. Brown, for the Archives of American Art.
Bowditch speaks of her memories of early childhood; her father, George de Forest Brush, and his work; her relationship with her father; and her education and upbringing. She reminisces about Augustus Saint-Gaudens and Abbott H. Thayer, who were family friends, and their relationships with Brush; her family's home life, their travels in Europe; her family's relationship with Samuel Clemens and family; and her first husband, William Robert Pearmain, his family background, their marriage, his involvement with organized labor and social reform, and his early death from leukemia. She also recalls Douglas Volk and Barry Faulkner.
Biographical / Historical:
Nancy Bowditch (1890-1979) was a painter, a playwright, and costume and set designer. Bowditch was born in Paris, the second eldest child of painter George de Forest Brush. Brush made the artist-colony of Dublin, N.H. his American home, where Mark Twain and daughter Jean Clemens were neighbors. They spent considerable time in Paris and Italy. Nancy married William Robert Pearmain, a childhood neighbor and later, a pupil of her father, in 1909. Pearmain died of leukemia in 1912. Subsequently, she married Dr. Harold Bowditch whose father was instrumental in the development of Harvard University Medical School.
General:
Originally recorded on 2 sound tape reels. Reformatted in 2010 as 1 digital wav file. Duration is 1 hr., 38 min.
Provenance:
This interview is part of the Archives of American Art Oral History Program, started in 1958 to document the history of the visual arts in the United States, primarily through interviews with artists, historians, dealers, critics and others.
Restrictions:
Transcript available on the Archives of American Art website.
Occupation:
Painters -- New Hampshire  Search this
Set designers -- New Hampshire  Search this
Costume designers -- New Hampshire  Search this
Authors -- New Hampshire  Search this
Topic:
Women artists  Search this
Women painters  Search this
Women designers  Search this
Women authors  Search this
Art, American  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.bowdit74
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-bowdit74
Online Media:

William Robert Pearmain and Pearmain family papers

Creator:
Pearmain, William Robert, 1888-1912  Search this
Names:
Industrial Workers of the World  Search this
Berkman, Alexander, 1870-1936  Search this
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas  Search this
Brooks, John Graham, 1846-1938  Search this
Brush, George de Forest, 1855-1941  Search this
Clemens, Samuel Langhorne, 1835-1910  Search this
Dole, Charles F. (Charles Fletcher), 1845-1927  Search this
Kent, Rockwell, 1882-1971  Search this
Pearmain, Alice  Search this
Pearmain, Jack  Search this
Pearmain, Margaret  Search this
Pearmain, Mary  Search this
Pearmain, Summer  Search this
Sanger, Margaret, 1879-1966  Search this
Sanger, William, b. 1888?  Search this
Trautmann, W. E. (William Ernst), b. 1869  Search this
Upton, Sarah  Search this
Extent:
0.4 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Writings
Photographs
Sketches
Watercolors
Diaries
Date:
1888-1955
Summary:
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.
Scope and Content Note:
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.

Scattered biographical information includes materials concerning the Pearmain and Upton families including a wedding invitation, school transcripts, biographical sketches and a debutate ball program from 1931.

Much of the correspondence is from William Robert Pearmain to his family written while in school and in Europe. Pearmain's correspondence with his family discusses his career, marriage, daughter, travel, and political views. Later correspondence is from both Robert and Nancy to family members. Other family correspondence is between Nancy, Polly, Sarah Upton, Sumner, Alice, Margaret, and Jack Pearmain.

There are a few incoming letters to Robert, including one from Margaret Sanger. There are condolence letters to Nancy from John Graham Brooks, Rockwell Kent, William Sanger, and Alexander Beckman. A letter from George de Forest Brush to Robert's mother, possibly dated 1906, discusses her unhappiness about Robert leaving Harvard and staying with the Brushs' in Italy. A photocopy of a letter from Samuel Clemens to George de Forest Brush is found. Additional correspondents include Charles F. Dole and William E. Trautmann.

Artwork consists of one watercolor by William Robert Pearmain. Writings and notes include one diary written by Robert while in Europe (1907), school essays, and a list of European trip expenses. Printed materials include clippings, and one issue each of Solidarity , and Mother Earth. Photographs are of a drawing of William Robert Pearmain by Will Loring and family snapshots of Robert, Nancy, and Polly Pearmain in New Hampshire (1911).
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged into 6 series:

Missing Title

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)
Biographical Note:
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.

Between 1907 and 1908, Pearmain travelled through France and Italy studying with Brush and other artists. Upon returning to the United States, Pearmain married the eldest daughter of his mentor, Nancy Douglas Brush in Dublin, New Hampshire. Also an artist, Nancy settled with Robert in Boston and later in New York City. While in New York, Pearmain worked as an assistant to muralist Barry Faulkner. In 1911, the Pearmains welcomed their daughter Mary Alice, whom they called Polly.

While in New York, Pearmain grew dissatisfied with his artistic career. He discovered an interest in the conditions of the working class and his social and political viewpoints became increasingly radical. Despite his privilaged upbringing, he immersed himself in the world of manual labor. Leaving his wife and daughter behind, Robert walked from New York City to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to work at the Westinghouse Electric Company. Additionally, Pearmain became associated with the Industrial Workers of the World organization and participated in anarchist demonstrations.

Soon after arriving in Pittsburgh, Pearmain's health started to fail. His family believed the hard working conditions caused his illness and a doctor suggested that he return to Massachusetts to recover. In September of 1912, Robert Pearmain died of leukemia. Later, Nancy remarried Dr. Harold Bowditch.
Related Material:
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.
Separated Material:
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.
Provenance:
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.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Rights:
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.
Topic:
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Travel -- Europe  Search this
Painters -- Massachusetts -- Boston  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Political activists -- Massachusetts -- Boston  Search this
Political activists -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Writings
Photographs
Sketches
Watercolors
Diaries
Citation:
William Robert Pearmain and Pearmain family papers, 1888-1955. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.pearwill
See more items in:
William Robert Pearmain and Pearmain family papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-pearwill
Online Media:

Nancy Douglas Bowditch watercolor of her Dublin, N.H. home

Creator:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas, 1890-1979  Search this
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas, 1890-1979  Search this
Type:
Artworks
Place:
Dublin, N.H.
Date:
not before 1911
Topic:
Artists' homes  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)10226
See more items in:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_10226
Online Media:

Framed photograph of Brush family in Dublin, N.H.

Subject:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas  Search this
Brush, George de Forest  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Place:
Dublin, N.H.
Date:
1931
Topic:
Families  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)10227
See more items in:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_10227
Online Media:

Nancy Douglas Brush letter to William Robert Pearmain

Creator:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas, 1890-1979  Search this
Pearmain, William Robert, 1888-1912  Search this
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas, 1890-1979  Search this
Type:
Correspondence
Date:
1909 Aug. 17
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)8780
See more items in:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_8780
Online Media:

William Robert Pearmain

Creator:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas, 1890-1979  Search this
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas, 1890-1979  Search this
Subject:
Pearmain, William Robert  Search this
Type:
Artworks
Date:
1912
Topic:
Portrait drawing  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)8781
See more items in:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_8781
Online Media:

Nancy Douglas Brush and Robert Pearmain on their wedding day with Gerome and George de Forest Brush

Subject:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas  Search this
Brush, George de Forest  Search this
Brush, Gerome  Search this
Pearmain, William Robert  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Date:
1909 Sept. 11
Topic:
Painters  Search this
Weddings  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)8782
See more items in:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_8782
Online Media:

Nancy Douglas Bowditch, Peterborough, N.H. letter to Thomas B. (Thomas Brendle) Brumbaugh

Creator:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas, 1890-1979  Search this
Brumbaugh, Thomas B. (Thomas Brendle), 1921-  Search this
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas, 1890-1979  Search this
Subject:
Thayer, Abbott Handerson  Search this
Type:
Correspondence
Date:
1968 Oct. 21
Topic:
Families  Search this
Family life  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)9031
See more items in:
Thomas B. Brumbaugh research material on Abbott Handerson Thayer and other artists, 1876-1994, bulk 1960-1994
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_9031
Online Media:

Mary Taylor Brush with her children Gerome, Nancy, Tribbie, and Georgia

Photographer:
Jarvis, Dorothy  Search this
Jarvis, Dorothy  Search this
Subject:
Bennett, E. S.  Search this
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas  Search this
Brush, Georgia  Search this
Brush, Gerome  Search this
Brush, Mary Taylor  Search this
Brush, Tribbie  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Date:
not before 1895
Topic:
Families  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)9179
See more items in:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_9179
Online Media:

The Brush children: Gerome, Nancy, Tribbie, and Georgie

Creator:
Fratelli Alinari  Search this
Fratelli Alinari  Search this
Subject:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas  Search this
Brush, Georgia  Search this
Brush, Gerome  Search this
Brush, Tribbie  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Date:
ca. 1905
Topic:
Children  Search this
Families  Search this
Portraits  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)9181
See more items in:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_9181
Online Media:

Nancy Brush and William Robert Pearmain

Photographer:
Reggiannini, Giovanni  Search this
Reggiannini, Giovanni  Search this
Subject:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas  Search this
Pearmain, William Robert  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Date:
1907 Aug. 1
Topic:
Painters  Search this
Women artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)9182
See more items in:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_9182
Online Media:

Nancy Brush

Subject:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas  Search this
Type:
Photographs
Date:
circa 1900
Topic:
Portrait photography  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)9184
See more items in:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_9184

Oral history interview with Nancy Douglas Bowditch, 1974 January 30

Interviewee:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas, 1890-1979  Search this
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas, 1890-1979  Search this
Interviewer:
Brown, Robert F  Search this
Subject:
Brush, George de Forest  Search this
Faulkner, Barry  Search this
Pearmain, William Robert  Search this
Saint-Gaudens, Augustus  Search this
Thayer, Abbott Handerson  Search this
Twain, Mark  Search this
Volk, Douglas  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Women artists  Search this
Women painters  Search this
Women designers  Search this
Women authors  Search this
Art, American  Search this
Theme:
Women  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)11972
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)212539
AAA_collcode_bowdit74
Theme:
Women
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_212539
Online Media:

William Robert Pearmain and Pearmain family papers, 1888-1955

Creator:
Pearmain, William Robert, 1888-1912  Search this
Pearmain, William Robert, 1888-1912  Search this
Subject:
Sanger, Margaret  Search this
Trautmann, W. E. (William Ernst)  Search this
Sanger, William  Search this
Upton, Sarah  Search this
Dole, Charles F. (Charles Fletcher)  Search this
Pearmain, Alice  Search this
Kent, Rockwell  Search this
Brush, George de Forest  Search this
Pearmain, Margaret  Search this
Pearmain, Jack  Search this
Pearmain, Summer  Search this
Pearmain, Mary  Search this
Berkman, Alexander  Search this
Clemens, Samuel Langhorne  Search this
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas  Search this
Brooks, John Graham  Search this
Industrial Workers of the World  Search this
Type:
Writings
Photographs
Sketches
Watercolors
Diaries
Topic:
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Travel -- Europe  Search this
Painters -- Massachusetts -- Boston  Search this
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Political activists -- Massachusetts -- Boston  Search this
Political activists -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Theme:
Diaries  Search this
Lives of American Artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)8812
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)210997
AAA_collcode_pearwill
Theme:
Diaries
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_210997
Online Media:

Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985

Creator:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas, 1890-1979  Search this
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas, 1890-1979  Search this
Subject:
Pearmain, William Robert  Search this
Parrish, Stephen  Search this
Kent, Rockwell  Search this
Clemens, Jane Lampton  Search this
Thayer, Abbott Handerson  Search this
Faulkner, Barry  Search this
Brush, George de Forest  Search this
White, Nelson C.  Search this
Type:
Biographies
Paintings
Diaries
Sound recordings
Sketches
Scrapbooks
Notes
Photographs
Topic:
Women artists  Search this
Women painters  Search this
Women designers  Search this
Women authors  Search this
Theme:
Women  Search this
Lives of American Artists  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)6782
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)208908
AAA_collcode_bowdnanc
Theme:
Women
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_208908
Online Media:

Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers

Creator:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas  Search this
Names:
Brush, George de Forest, 1855-1941  Search this
Clemens, Jane Lampton, 1880-1909  Search this
Faulkner, Barry, 1881-1966  Search this
Kent, Rockwell, 1882-1971  Search this
Parrish, Stephen, 1846-1938  Search this
Pearmain, William Robert, 1888-1912  Search this
Thayer, Abbott Handerson, 1849-1921  Search this
White, Nelson C.  Search this
Extent:
6.2 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Biographies
Paintings
Diaries
Sound recordings
Sketches
Scrapbooks
Notes
Photographs
Date:
circa 1860-1985
Summary:
The papers of painter, author, and designer Nancy Douglas Bowditch and the George de Forest Brush family measure 6.2 linear feet and date from circa 1860 to 1985. The majority of the collection consists of Bowditch's correspondence with family and friends and her notes and writings, particularly concerning her biography of her father George de Forest Brush The Joyous Painter, and her unpublished biography of her husband painter William Robert Pearmain. Brush family material includes scattered correspondence of George de Forest Brush and other family members, notes, sketches, clippings, and the family home building files, five scrapbooks, including two on William Robert Pearmain, and numerous photographs of the Brush family, Bowditch, and William Robert Pearmain. There is also correspondence between William Robert Pearmain and his family and artwork by Pearmin.
Scope and Contents note:
The papers of painter, author, and designer Nancy Douglas Bowditch and the George de Forest Brush family measure 6.2 linear feet and date from circa 1860 to 1985. The majority of the collection consists of Bowditch's correspondence with family and friends and her notes and writings, particularly concerning her biography of her father George de Forest Brush The Joyous Painter, and her unpublished biography of her husband painter William Robert Pearmain. Brush family material includes scattered correspondence of George de Forest Brush and other family members, notes, sketches, clippings, and the family home building files, five scrapbooks, including two on William Robert Pearmain, and numerous photographs of the Brush family, Bowditch, and William Robert Pearmain. There is also correspondence between William Robert Pearmain and his family and artwork by Pearmin.

Scattered family biographical materials include invitations, biographical sketches of George de Forest Brush, a ship's register, certificates, an obituary, and a sound recording of Nancy Bowditch.

Scattered personal business records include deeds of gift from various institutions and agreements from the publishing of The Joyous Painter.

One-third of the collection is correspondence with Nancy Douglas Bowditch, William Robert Pearmain, George de Forest Brush, and other members of the Brush, Pearmain, and Bowditch families. The majority of Nancy Douglas Bowditch's correspondence is from family and friends, although professional correspondence is also found. Nancy's notable correspondents include Jane Clemens, Barry Faulkner, Rockwell Kent, members of the Abbot Handerson Thayer family, and Nelson C. White. Also found are Nancy's letters to her first husband, William Robert Pearmain. Pearmain's correspondence includes letters from his parents, siblings, and his father-in-law, and a few letters from Pearmain to his family. George de Forest Brush's correspondence includes letters from friends and a few copies of letters written by Brush.

Writings and notes are primarily by Nancy Douglas Bowditch, the majority of which pertain to her biography of George de Forest Brush, The Joyous Painter, and her unpublished biography of William Robert Pearmain. Other writings are by George de Forest Brush, Tribbie Brush, Barry Faulkner, and William Robert Pearmain.

Artwork consists of approximately 78 drawings and sketches by William Robert Pearmain, 5 drawings and paintings by Nancy Bowditch, and one drawing by George de Forest Brush.

Brush family home and building files contain materials relating to a log cabin in New Hampshire, and the family home Brushwood which was built by William Robert Pearmain in 1911.

Five scrapbooks were compiled by members of the Brush, Pearmain, and Bowditch families. Two are about Pearmain, two are about George de Forest Brush, and one was organized by Harold Bowditch that contains family photographs.

Within printed materials are exhibition announcements and catalogs for George de Forest Brush, Barry Faulkner, Stephen Parrish, and Abbot Handerson Thayer.

Extensive photographs are of members of the Brush family, the Pearmain family, the Bowditch family, friends, and works of art by Bowditch, Brush, Pearmain and Douglas Volk. Included are portraits, snapshots, travel photos, wedding photos, and photos of the Brush family homes.
Arrangement note:
The collection is arranged as 9 series:

Missing Title

Series 1: Biographical Information, 1909-1965 (Box 1; 7 folders)

Series 2: Personal Business and Financial Records, 1908-1974 (Box 1; 3 folders)

Series 3: Correspondence, 1895-1979 (Boxes 1-3; 2.0 linear feet)

Series 4: Writings and Notes, circa 1900-1975 (Boxes 3-4; 1.0 linear feet)

Series 5: Artwork, 1898-1950 (Boxes 4, 9-10; 4 folders)

Series 6: Printed Material, 1889-1974 (Box 4; 0.2 linear feet)

Series 7: Brush Family Home Building Files, 1910-1971 (Boxes 4, 8, 10; 0.7 linear feet)

Series 8: Scrapbooks, circa 1907-circa 1985 (Boxes 5, 8; 0.7 linear feet)

Series 9: Photographs, circa 1860-1979 (Boxes 5-7, 11; 1.0 linear feet)
Biographical/Historical note:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch (1890-1979) worked primarily in the New Hampshire area as a painter, author, and costume and set designer. Bowditch's father was painter George de Forest Brush and she was first married to painter William Robert Pearmain, who died at an early age.

Nancy Douglas Bowditch was born to Mary and George de Forest Brush on July 4, 1890 in Paris, France. Along with her siblings Mary, Jane, Thea, Gerome, Tribbie, and Georgia, she often served as a subject of her father's paintings. The family lived in the artist colony of Dublin, New Hampshire where Nancy became close friends with their neighbor Samuel Clemens' (Mark Twain) daughter Jean Clemens.

Nancy met and became close to one of her father's pupils, William Robert Pearmain while traveling through Europe in 1907. Two years later, Nancy married Robert at the Brush family farm in Dublin, New Hampshire. Together, they had one daughter, Mary Alice whom they called Polly. Robert developed a strong political interest in growing anarchist movements, gave up painting and went to Pittsburgh to work in a factory. Shortly after, he became seriously ill and, upon the advice of a doctor, moved back to New Hampshire with Nancy. He soon died from leukemia in September 1912. In 1918, Nancy married her second husband Dr. Harold Bowditch from Boston, Massachusetts. With her second husband, Nancy had three more children, Martha, Henry, and George de Forest Bowditch.

Professionally, Nancy worked as a painter, wrote plays, and designed theatrical sets and costumes. In 1971, Bowditch published a biography of George de Forest Brush entitled The Joyous Painter. Nancy Douglas Bowditch died in 1979.
Related Archival Materials note:
Also among the collections at the Archives of American Art are the William Robert Pearmain and Pearmain family papers, 1888-1955, and an oral history with Nancy Douglas Bowditch conducted on January 30, 1974 by Robert F. Brown.
Provenance:
The Nancy Douglas Bowditch papers were donated to the Archives of American Art in several installments by Nancy Douglas Bowditch between 1968 and 1979. Bowditch's daughter, Mary A. Marlowe donated additional materials in 1982. In 2008, Joan Morgan, biographer of George de Forest Brush, donated additional papers she had acquired during her research.
Restrictions:
Use of originals requires an appointment.
Rights:
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.
Occupation:
Painters -- New Hampshire  Search this
Set designers -- New Hampshire  Search this
Costume designers -- New Hampshire  Search this
Authors -- New Hampshire  Search this
Topic:
Women artists  Search this
Women painters  Search this
Women designers  Search this
Women authors  Search this
Genre/Form:
Biographies
Paintings
Diaries
Sound recordings
Sketches
Scrapbooks
Notes
Photographs
Citation:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.bowdnanc
See more items in:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-bowdnanc
Online Media:

Pearmain, William Robert

Collection Creator:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas  Search this
Container:
Box 2, Folder 1
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1908
Scope and Contents note:
William to Nancy
Collection Restrictions:
Use of originals requires an appointment.
Collection Rights:
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.
Collection Citation:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers / Series 3: Correspondence / 3.1: Nancy Douglas Bowditch Correspondence
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-bowdnanc-ref100

Pearmain, William Robert

Collection Creator:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas  Search this
Container:
Box 2, Folder 2
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1909-1912
Scope and Contents note:
William to Nancy
Collection Restrictions:
Use of originals requires an appointment.
Collection Rights:
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.
Collection Citation:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers / Series 3: Correspondence / 3.1: Nancy Douglas Bowditch Correspondence
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-bowdnanc-ref102

Bowditch, Martha

Collection Creator:
Bowditch, Nancy Douglas  Search this
Container:
Box 1, Folder 19
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1971
Collection Restrictions:
Use of originals requires an appointment.
Collection Rights:
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.
Collection Citation:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers, circa 1860-1985. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
See more items in:
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers
Nancy Douglas Bowditch and Brush family papers / Series 3: Correspondence / 3.1: Nancy Douglas Bowditch Correspondence
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-aaa-bowdnanc-ref1026

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