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Charles Lang Freer Papers

Creator:
Freer, Charles Lang, 1856-1919  Search this
Extent:
131 Linear feet (29 architectural drawings)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Diaries
Financial records
Correspondence
Photographs
Place:
China
Syria
Egypt
India
London (England)
Japan
Boston (Mass.)
Detroit (Mich.)
Washington (D.C.)
Kandy (Sri Lanka)
Sri Lanka
Anuradhapura (Sri Lanka)
Date:
1876-1931
Summary:
The personal papers of Charles Lang Freer, the industrialist and art collector who founded the Freer Gallery of Art. The papers include correspondence, diaries, art inventories, scrapbooks of clippings on James McNeil Whistler and other press clippings, and photographs.
Scope Content:
The personal papers of Charles Lang Freer, the industrialist and art collector who founded the Freer Gallery of Art. The papers include correspondence, diaries, art inventories, scrapbooks of clippings on James McNeil Whistler and other press clippings, financial material, architectural drawings, and photographs.

Correspondence, circa 1860-1921, includes Freer's correspondence, 1876-1920, with artists, dealers, collectors, museums, and public figures; letterpress books contain copies of Freer's outgoing letters, 1892-1910; correspondence collected by Freer of James McNeill Whistler, and his wife Beatrix, 186?-1909, with Lady Colin Campbell, Thomas R. Way, Alexander Reid, Whistler's mother, Mrs. George W. Whistler, and others; correspondence of Whistler collector Richard A. Canfield, 1904-1913, regarding works in Canfield's collection; and correspondence of Freer's assistant, Katharine Nash Rhoades, 1920-1921, soliciting Freer's letters from his associates, and regarding the settlement of his estate.

Also included are twenty-nine pocket diaries, 1889-1890, 1892-1898, 1900-1919, recording daily activities, people and places visited, observations, and comments; a diary kept by Freer's caretaker, Joseph Stephens Warring, recording daily activities at Freer's Detroit home, 1907-1910. Inventories, n.d. and 1901-1921, of American, European, and Asian art in Freer's collection, often including provenance information; vouchers, 1884-1919, documenting his purchases; five volumes of scrapbooks of clippings on James McNeill Whistler, 1888-1931, labeled "Various," "Peacock Room," "Death, etc.," "Paris, etc.," and "Boston...London" ; three volumes of newsclippings, 1900-1930, concerning Freer and the opening of the Freer Gallery of Art.

Correspondence regarding Freer's gift and bequest to the Smithsonian Institution, 1902-1916; and photographs, ca. 1880-1930, of Freer, including portraits by Alvin Langdon Coburn and Edward Steichen, Freer with others, Freer in Cairo, China and Japan, Freer's death mask, and his memorial service, Kyoto, 1930; photographs of artists and others, including Thomas Dewing, Ernest Fenollosa, Katharine Rhoades taken by Alfred Stieglitz, Rosalind B. Philip, Augustus Saint-Gaudens, Abbott H. Thayer, Dwight Tryon, and Whistler; and photographs relating to Whistler, including art works depicting him, grave and memorial monuments, works of art, the Peacock Room, and Whistler's memorial exhibition at the Copley Society.
Organization of the Papers:
This collection is organized into twelve series.

Series 1: Genealogical and Biographical Data

Series 2: Correspondence

Series 3: Diaries

Series 4: Freer Colleague Materials

Series 5: Art Inventories

Series 6: Financial Materials

Series 7: Exhibition Loan Files

Series 8: Biblical Manuscripts and Gold Treasure Files

Series 9: American School of Archaeology in China

Series 10: Printed Material

Series 11: Outsize Material

Series 12: Photographs
Biographical Note:
1854 February 25 -- Born in Kingston, New York

1873 -- Appointed accountant and paymaster of New York, Kingston and Syracuse Railroad by Frank J. Hecker (1846-1927)

1876 -- Moves to Indiana to work, with Hecker, for the Detroit and Eel River and Illinois Railroad

1880 -- Moves to Detroit, participates in organization of the Peninsular Car Works with Hecker

1883 -- Becomes vice president and secretary of Peninsular Car Company when it succeeds Peninsular Car Works

1883 -- Begins collecting European prints

1884 -- Peninsular Car Company constructs plant on Ferry Avenue

1887 -- Meets Howard Mansfield (1849-1938)

1887 -- Acquires proofs of 26 etchings, Venice, Second Series(1886), by James McNeill Whistler (1834-1903)

1887 -- Purchases a small Japanese fan attributed to Ogata Karin(1658-1715)

1887 -- Buys land on Ferry Avenue

1889 -- Meets Frederick Stuart Church (1826-1900) and Dwight William Tryon (1849-1925) in New York

1890 -- Commissions Wilson Eyre (1858-1944) to design house on Ferry Avenue, Detroit, Michigan

1890 -- On first trip to London, meets James McNeill Whistler(1834-1903)

1892 -- Moves to Ferry Avenue house

1892 -- Tryon and Thomas Wilmer Dewing (1851-1938) undertake decoration of reception rooms

1893 -- Lends American paintings to World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago

1893 -- Purchases first piece of Chinese art, a small painting of white herons by an anonymous Ming dynasty (1368-1644) artist

1894 -- Begins yearlong trip around the world, which includes visit to the Whistlers in Paris and first trip to Asia, stopping in Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), India, China, and Japan

1896 -- Meets Matsuki Bunkyo (1867-1940) in Boston

1899 -- Takes part in consolidation of railroad-car building companies then retires from active business

1900 -- Attends Exposition International Universelle in Paris

1900 -- Buys villa in Capri with Thomas S. Jerome

1901 -- Meets Siegfried Bing (1838-1905) in Paris and Ernest Fenollosa(1853-1908), who visits Freer in Detroit

1902 -- Meets Dikran Kelekian (1868-1951)

1902 -- Spends summer in Britain building Whistler collection

1902 -- Views Whistler's, Harmony in Blue and Gold: The Peacock Room

1904 -- Purchases Whistler's Peacock Room

1904 -- Offers his art collections and funds to build a museum in which to house them to the Smithsonian Institution

1905 -- Smithsonian committee visits Freer in Detroit

1906 -- United States government formally accepts Freer's gift on January 24

1906 -- Freer signs Deed of Gift to Smithsonian Institution on May 5

1907 -- On second tour of Asia, meets Hara Tomitaro 1868-1939) in Yokohama, Japan

1908 -- Takes third trip to Asia, specifically to West Asia to study Rakka ware

1909 -- Tours Europe to study art museums

1909 -- On fourth trip to Asia, attends memorial ceremony for Fenollosa (d.1908 September) at Miidera, Japan, and meets Duanfang (1861-1911) in China

1910 -- On last trip to Asia, visits Longmen Buddhist caves in China

1911 -- Suffers stroke

1912 -- Lends selection of objects for exhibition at Smithsonian Institution

1913 -- Meets Eugene (1875-1957) and Agnes E. (1887-1970) Meyer

1913 -- Commissions Charles Adams Platt (1861-1933) to design museum building in Washington

1914 -- Meets Katharine Nash Rhoades (1885-1965) in Detroit

1915 -- Settles in New York City

1915 -- Site of future Freer Gallery of Art is determined

1916 -- Platt's plans for Freer Gallery are approved by Smithsonian Regents and Commission of Fine Arts and ground is broken in September

1918 -- After falling ill in Detroit, Freer travels to New York for treatment

1918 -- Work on the museum building is delayed by the war

1919 -- Freer appends codicil to will permitting acquisitions of Asian, Egyptian, and Near Eastern (West Asian) art

1919 -- Dies in New York City on 25 September and is buried in Kingston, New York

1919 -- Construction of Freer Gallery completed

1920 -- John Ellerton Lodge (1876-1942) is appointed director of the Freer Gallery

1923 -- Freer Gallery opens to the public on May 9

1930 -- Memorial ceremony for Freer is held at Koetsuji, Kyoto

Charles Lang Freer was an American industrialist who founded the Freer Gallery of Art. He was a well-known collector of Asian art, and strongly supported the synthesis of Eastern art and Western art. One of his most famous acquisitions was James McNeill Whistler's Peacock Room.
Index:
Index to cross-referenced correspondents in the series Charles Lang Freer correspondence

Beal, Junius E. -- See: -- Warring, Joseph Stephens

Black, George M. -- See: -- Saint-Gaudens, Augustus

Board of Education (Kingston, New York) See: Michael, M. J.

Bonner, Campbell See: University of Michigan

Boughton, George H. See: Yardley, F. C.

British Museum See: Binyon, Laurence; Hobson, R. L.

Brown, Harold H. See: Art Association of Indianapolis

Buchner, Evelyn B. See: Knoedler, M., and Company

Buckholder, C. H. See: Art Institute of Chicago

Butler, S. B. See: Unidentified correspondents

Carnegie Institute See: Balken, Edward Duff; Harshe, Robert B.

Carpenter, Newton H. See: Art Institute of Chicago

Caulkins, Horace James See: Pewabic Pottery

Chao, Shih-chin See: Gunn, Chu Su

Chicago & North Western Railway Co. See: Hughett, Marvin

Clark, Charles Upson See: Clark, Arthur B.

Cleveland Museum of Art See: Whiting, Frederic Allen

Columbia University See: Braun, W. A.; Gottheil, Richard; Hirth, Friederich

Commission of Fine Arts See: Moore, Charles

Corcoran Gallery of Art See: Minnigerode, C. Powell

Crocker, Anna B. See: Portland Art Association

Dannenberg, D. E. See: Karlbeck, Orvar

De Menoncal, Beatrice See: Lien, Hui Ch'ing Collection

De Ricci, Seymour See: Ricci, Seymour de

Defnet, William A., Mrs., See: Franke, Ida M.

DeMotte See: Vigouroux, J.

Detroit Institute of Arts See: Detroit Museum of Art

Detroit Publishing Company See: Livingstone, W. A.

Detroit School of Design See: George Hamilton; Stevens, Henry

DeVinne Press See: Peters, Samuel T.; Witherspoon, A. S.

Dyrenforth, P. C. See: Philip, Rosalind Birnie

Eddy, Arthur J. See: Philip, Rosalind Birnie

Eggers, George Williams See: Art Institute of Chicago

Farr, Daniel H. See: Robinson and Farr

Farrand School (Detroit) See: Yendall, Edith

Field Museum of Natural History (Chicago) See: Laufer, Berthold

Flagg, Frederick J. See: Allen, Horace N.

Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University See: Forbes, Edward; Pope, Arthur Upham; Sachs, Paul J.

French, M. R. See: Art Institute of Chicago

Fu, Lan-ya See: Pang, Lai-ch'en

Fujii, Yoshio See: Yoshio, Fujii

Gerrity, Thomas See: Knoedler, M., and Company

Goupil Gallery See: Marchant, William

Gray, William J. See: Barr, Eva

Great Lakes Engineering Works See: Hoyt, H. W.

Grolier Club See: Philip, Rosalind Birnie

Heinemann, W. See: Philip, Rosalind Birnie

Holden, Edward S. See: West Point, U. S. Military Academy

Hudson, J. L. See: Weber, William C.

Hutchins, Harry B. See: University of Michigan

Hutchins, Charles L. See: Art Institute of Chicago

Kelekian, H. G. See: Kelekian, Dikran G.

Kent, H. W. See: Metropolitan Museum of Art

Lee, Kee Son See: Li, Chi-ch'un

Levy, John See: Schneider, A. K.

Library of Congress See: Rice, Richard A.; Wright, Helen

Louvre (Paris, France) See: Midgeon, Gaston

Matsuki, Z. See: Matsuki, Kihachiro

McKim, Mead and White See: White, Stanford

Mills, A. L., Colonel See: Saint-Gaudens, Augustus

Miner, Luella See: Lien, Hui Ch'ing Collection

Minneapolis Institute of Arts See: Breck, Joseph; Van Derlip, John R.

Monif, R. Khan See: Rathbun, Richard

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston See: Lodge, John Ellerton

Naser, Katen & Nahass See: Katen, K.

Nordlinger, Marie, Miss See: Meyer-Riefstahl, Marie

Panama Pacific International Exposition See: Moore, Charles C.; Trask, John E. D.

Peabody Museum See: Morse, Edward Sylvester

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts See: Trask, John E. D.

Perry, Mary Chase, Miss., See: Pewabic Pottery

Philip, Ronald M. See: Philip, Rosalind Birnie

Pope, G. D. See: Barr, Eva

Reinhart, A. G. See: Gottschalk, E.

Reitz, Sigisbert Chrétien Bosch See: Bosch-Reitz, Sigisbert Chrétien

Rutgers College See: Van Dyke, John C.

Saint-Gaudens, Augusta H. See: Saint-Gaudens, Augustus

Saint-Gaudens, Homer See: Saint-Gaudens, Augustus

Samurai Shokai See: Nomura, Yozo

San Francisco Art Association See: Laurvik, J. Nilsen

Scribner's, Charles, Sons See: Van Dyke, John C.

Shaw, Wilfred B. See: University of Michigan

Shirae, S. Z. See: Yamanaka and Company

Smith College See: Clark, Arthur B.

Smithsonian Institution See: Holmes, William Henry; Rathbun, Richard; Ravenel, Walcott, Charles D.

Society of Arts and Crafts (Detroit) See: Plumb, Helen

Societe des Beaux-Arts See: Reid, Alexander

Stevens, George W. See: Toledo Museum of Art

Stratton, Mary Chase Perry See: Pewabic Pottery

Tanaka, Kichijiro See: Yamanaka and Company

Tuttle, William F. See: Art Institute of Chicago

Union Trust Company (Detroit) See: Philip, Rosalind Birnie

United States Military Academy See: West Point, U. S. Military Academy

University of Chicago See: Zug, George Breed

University of Pennsylvania, Univ. Mus. See: Gordon, George Bryon

Ushikubo, D. J. R. See: Yamanaka and Company

Wallis & Son See: Barr, Eva; Thompson, C. Croal Ward, Clarence See: Oberlin College

Warren, Edward K. See: Philip, Rosalind Birnie

Warring, Stephen See: Warring, Joseph Stephens

Watkin, Williams R. T. See: Philip, Rosalind Birnie

Watson, Margaret, Miss See: Parker, Margaret Watson

Whistler, Anna See: Stanton, Anna Whistler

Whiting, Almon C. See: Toledo Museum of Art

Williams College See: Rice, Richard A

Wright, F. G. See: Orbach and Company

Yatsuhashi, H. See: Yamanaka and Company
Index to cross-referenced correspondence in the series Whistler correspondence

Bell, William See: Unidentified correspondents

Brown, Ernest See: Painter Etchers' Society, Committee

Cowen, John T. See subseries: Charles Lang Freer Correspondence

Ford, Sheridan See: Reid, Alexander

Haden, Francis Seymour See: Painter Etchers' Society, Committee

Haden, Francis Seymour, Lady See: Haden, Deborah Whistler

Leighton, Frederick, Baron See: Campbell, Lady Colin

Moore, Albert See: Reid, Alexander

Morley, Charles See: Pall Mall Gazette

Morris, Harrison S. See: Reid, Alexander

Pennell, Joseph See: Miscellaneous typescripts

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts See: Reid, Alexander

Prange, F. G. See: Reid, Alexander

Societe des Beaux-Arts See: Reid, Alexander

Society of Portrait Painters See: Reid, Alexander

Stevens Fine Art See: Reid, Alexander

Studd, Arthur See: Miscellaneous typescripts

[Vanderbilt?], George, Mrs. See: George, Mrs.

Whistler, William McNeill, Mrs. See: Whistler, Nellie

Whistler Memorial Committee See: Miscellaneous typescripts
Related Material:
The Archives of American Art microfilmed portions of the Freer papers in 1992. The microfilm is available at the Archives of American Art's Washington D.C. office, the Freer Gallery of Art Library, and through interlibrary loan.
Provenance:
Gift of the estate of Charles Lang Freer.
Restrictions:
Collection is open for research.
Rights:
Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the repository.
Topic:
Art, American -- Collectors and collecting  Search this
Art, Asian -- Collectors and collecting  Search this
Art -- Collectors and collecting  Search this
Architecture -- Asia  Search this
Genre/Form:
Diaries
Financial records
Correspondence
Photographs
Citation:
Charles Lang Freer Papers. Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives. Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. Gift of the estate of Charles Lang Freer.
Identifier:
FSA.A.01
See more items in:
Charles Lang Freer Papers
Archival Repository:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-fsa-a-01
Online Media:

American School of Archaeology in China

Collection Creator:
Freer, Charles Lang, 1856-1919  Search this
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1912-1914
Scope and Contents note:
A brief series on the American School of Archaeology in China of which Charles Lang Freer was a major key player in its founding. This series contains correspondence relating to the school's set up and function, articles surrounding its foundation, and the first set of meeting minutes.
Collection Restrictions:
Collection is open for research.
Collection Rights:
Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the repository.
Collection Citation:
Charles Lang Freer Papers. Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives. Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. Gift of the estate of Charles Lang Freer.
Identifier:
FSA.A.01, Series 9
See more items in:
Charles Lang Freer Papers
Archival Repository:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-fsa-a-01-ref2252

Correspondence and Notes

Collection Creator:
Freer, Charles Lang, 1856-1919  Search this
Container:
Box 246, Folder 1
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1912-1914
Collection Restrictions:
Collection is open for research.
Collection Rights:
Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the repository.
Collection Citation:
Charles Lang Freer Papers. Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives. Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. Gift of the estate of Charles Lang Freer.
See more items in:
Charles Lang Freer Papers
Charles Lang Freer Papers / Series 9: American School of Archaeology in China
Archival Repository:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-fsa-a-01-ref2253

Clippings

Collection Creator:
Freer, Charles Lang, 1856-1919  Search this
Container:
Box 246, Folder 2
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1913
Collection Restrictions:
Collection is open for research.
Collection Rights:
Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the repository.
Collection Citation:
Charles Lang Freer Papers. Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives. Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. Gift of the estate of Charles Lang Freer.
See more items in:
Charles Lang Freer Papers
Charles Lang Freer Papers / Series 9: American School of Archaeology in China
Archival Repository:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-fsa-a-01-ref2254

General Meeting Minutes

Collection Creator:
Freer, Charles Lang, 1856-1919  Search this
Container:
Box 246, Folder 3
Type:
Archival materials
Date:
1913
Collection Restrictions:
Collection is open for research.
Collection Rights:
Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the repository.
Collection Citation:
Charles Lang Freer Papers. Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives. Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C. Gift of the estate of Charles Lang Freer.
See more items in:
Charles Lang Freer Papers
Charles Lang Freer Papers / Series 9: American School of Archaeology in China
Archival Repository:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-fsa-a-01-ref2255

Carl Whiting Bishop Collection

Creator:
Bishop, Carl Whiting, 1881-1942  Search this
Names:
Bishop, Carl Whiting, 1881-1942  Search this
Tung, Kuang-zung.  Search this
Warner, Langdon (1881-1955)  Search this
Wenley, A. G. (Archibald Gibson), 1898-1962  Search this
Extent:
20 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Negatives
Photographic prints
Manuscript
Place:
China
Date:
1923-1934
Summary:
An associate curator and associate in archaeology at the Freer Gallery of Art from 1922 to 1942, the collection of Carl Whiting Bishop (1881-1942) document his Gallery-sponsored travels to China from 1923 to 1934 and include an unpublished manuscript describing his archaeological research in China; line drawings; rubbings; maps; note cards; and nearly 4,000 glass and film negatives with corresponding original silver prints. These document his expeditions in northern and central China, illustrating archaeological sites in Henan, Shanxi, and Hebei provinces. Specific digs include the large neolithic site at Wanquan, Shanxi, and sixth century C.E. tombs near Fenyin. Additional images show Chinese cityscapes, daily life and customs, topography, temples, pagodas, caves, and sculpture.
Scope and Contents:
The professional papers and official records of Carl Whiting Bishop include his unpublished two-volume manuscript, [not before 1940]; and photographs, nearly 4,000 images, 1915-1934; and undated. These materials document over a twenty-five year period in the course of Bishop's research and archaeological activities. They were retained at the Freer Gallery of Art after Bishop's death in 1942, and were supplemented with an addition received in 1956 from his widow Daisy Furscott Bishop.

The manuscript was prepared in a typescript format, over 421 pages of text, with photographic illustrations, and completed by Bishop sometime after 1939. Properly titled Archaeological Research in China 1923-1934, this unpublished manuscript constituted a field report that chronicled Bishop's Gallery-sponsored expeditions in northern and central China during the period 1923 to 1934. The reader is provided with a record of the day-to-day operations completed, of obstacles and opposition encountered, and the results obtained from their work. Key diplomatic and scientific representatives from the West and China are recorded who aided and contributed to the investigations. Moreover, there are descriptions of the academic, social and political climate in China during a period of civil war and economic strife. Against this background, Bishop also discussed their efforts in view of the history of China, with commentary on the country's geography, topography, climate, flora and fauna, mineral products, and ancient customs and legends.

The earliest still photographic prints in the Bishop Papers date from his employ at the University of Pennsylvania Museum, where he conducted archaeological reconnaissance from 1915 to 1918 in China, Korea, and Japan. All subsequent images were created or collected by Bishop and his assistant Kuang-zung Tung during the Freer Gallery-sponsored expeditions of 1923-1934. Further descriptions of these materials may be found under Series 2 and Series 3 in this finding aid.

In the transliteration into English of the names of Chinese characters, Bishop followed the Wade-Giles system, with a few exceptions to those rules for certain well known and commonly used place-names, especially those of cities, towns, territorial divisions, and bodies of water. We have retained Bishop's romanization except in certain areas where clarification was needed. The Chinese personal and place-names have been kept as they appeared in his captions.
Arrangement:
Series 1: Manuscript/Writings 1915-1934 and undated

Series 2: Photography Prints

Series 3: Negatives

Series 4: Drawings, Rubbings, and Maps
Biographical / Historical:
Carl Whiting Bishop (1881-1942) was an archaeologist, anthropologist, and specialist in the field of East Asian studies. Born in Tokyo, Japan, on July 12, 1881, he was the son of a Methodist missionary, the Reverend Charles Bishop. Except for a twelve-month residence in the United States during 1889-90, Bishop spent the first sixteen years of his life in Japan, before returning to this country in 1898 for college preparatory work at Northwestern Academy, Evanston, Illinois. He studied at Hampden-Sydney College and in 1912 received an A.B. degree from DePauw University. In 1913 he was awarded the degree of Master of Arts by the Department of Anthropology, Columbia University, where he studied with the noted German anthropologist, Franz Boas (1858-1942). That same year he received his first scientific appointment as a member of the Peabody Museum Expedition to Central America.

From 1914-18 Bishop served as Assistant Curator in Oriental Art at the University of Pennsylvania Museum, where on an expedition for that museum he made his first trip to China. Under the auspices of the university, he conducted archaeological reconnaissance during 1915 and 1916 in China, Korea, and Japan, and again conducted archaeological surveys in 1917 and 1918, although no systematic excavations were carried out at that time. When the United States entered World War I on the side of the Allied Powers, Bishop enlisted in the United States Navy and was made assistant naval attaché, serving in China in the years 1918-20, with the rank of lieutenant, junior grade. He returned to Columbia University in 1921 to assume the position of Assistant in Anthropology, a post he held until the end of the academic season in 1922.

Effective 10 April 1922, Bishop was appointed as Associate Curator of the Freer Gallery of Art by then director John Ellerton Lodge (1878-1942). Asked to undertake important archaeological work, Bishop headed the gallery's first expedition to China, sponsored jointly by the FGA and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, lasting from 20 February 1923 to 6 August 1927. From 16 November 1929 to 11 April 1934, he headed another expedition, sent out this time by the Freer Gallery alone. When conditions in China made further efforts impractical, Bishop returned to Washington in 1934, where he remained at the gallery as Associate in Archaeology until the time of his death on 16 June 1942.

Carl Whiting Bishop was a member of a number of learned societies: the American Oriental Society, the American Archaeological Society, the Anthropological Society, the American Society for the Advancement of Science, the American Geographical Society, and he served on the advisory board of the American Council of Learned Societies until his death.

1881, July 12 -- Born in Tokyo, Japan

1898 -- Attends Northwestern Academy in Evanston, Illinois for college preparatory work Attends Hampden-Sydney College

1912 -- Receives A.B. degree from DePauw University

1913 -- Receives Master of Arts from Department of Anthropology from Columbia University, where he studied with Franz Boas

1914 -- Begins serving as Assistant Curator in Oriental Art at the University of Pennsylvania Museum

1915-1918 -- Makes several archaeological survey trips to China, Korea and Japan

1918-1920 -- Enlists in the U.S. Navy, serving as assistant naval attaché in China

1921 -- Serves as Assistant Professor in Anthropology at Columbia University

1922, April 10 -- Becomes Associate Curator of the Freer Gallery of Art

1923-1927 -- Heads the Freer Gallery's first expedition to China, co-sponsored by the Boston Museum of Fine Arts

1929-1934 -- Heads the second Freer-sponsored expedition to China

1934 -- Returns to US and serves as Associate in Archaeology at the Freer Gallery of Art

1942, June 16 -- Dies.
Related Materials:
Additional Bishop material may be found in the following collections also found in the the Archives of the Freer Gallery of Art and the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery:

Li Chi Reports, 1926-1929, regarding Li's reconnaissance work at Shi-yin Ts'un, Shansi Province, and the excavation at Anyang.

Archibald Gibson Wenley Papers, 1924-1926, including field diaries, notes, and photographs documenting his participation in the FGA expedition work in China.

Charles Lang Freer Papers, including 1915 correspondence between Freer and Bishop; newspaper clippings related to Bishop, and documents dated 1912-1913, relating to Freer's support for a proposed American School of Archeology in China.

A number of objects from the FGA expeditions, including bronzes, ceramics, and stone sculpture, have been accessioned into the permanent art collection of the Freer Gallery of Art. Additionally, remnants of antiquities, potteries, and metalwork accumulated during the field work, have been placed in the Freer Gallery Study Collection. Records for these items are retained with the Galleries' Registrar's Office.

Additional Bishop material may be found in the Smithsonian Institutional Archives:

Expedition Records, including correspondence of Carl Whiting Bishop, 1914; 1923-1942, nearly 3,000 letters arranged alphabetically by correspondent name; a manuscript catalogue of expedition acquisitions, Peking, 1923-1925; financial records, 1923-1934, including expedition fund ledgers, account statements, and receipts; and newspaper clippings, 1924-1932, documenting the gallery's field work and general archaeological work being conducted around the world at that time.

Smithsonian Institutional Archives, Central Files, Bishop folders, 1923-1942, including expedition letters, field reports, and photographs sent to John E. Lodge.

Personnel and Special Events Photograph Collection, containing portrait photographs of Bishop.

Additional Bishop matieral may be found in the University of Pennsylvania Museum Archives, Philadelphia:

Documentation of University of Pennsylvania Museum-sponsored field work in East Asia may be found there that includes records of C.W. Bishop, dated 1914-1927 (measuring about .5 linear foot), much of it created during his tenure as the Museum's Assistant Curator of Oriental Art from 1914-1918. Included are Bishop's journals consisting of daily entries for two trips to China for the University of Pennsylvania Museum; letters to and from G.B. Gordon, C.W. Harrison, and Jane McHugh, written during Bishop's travel in China and subsequent to his return; and detailed financial accounts of expenditures during the China travels. Additionally, the repository houses a group of Bishop's negatives taken in China to visually record the expedition work.
Provenance:
Gift of Carl Whiting Bishop.
Restrictions:
Collection is open for research.
Rights:
Permission to reproduce and publish an item from the Archives is coordinated through the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery's Rights and Reproductions department. Please contact the Archives in order to initiate this process.
Topic:
Archaeology  Search this
Archaeological expeditions  Search this
Archaeology -- China  Search this
Photography -- China  Search this
Genre/Form:
Negatives
Photographic prints
Manuscript
Citation:
The Carl Whiting Bishop Collection. Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives. Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.
Identifier:
FSA.A.02
See more items in:
Carl Whiting Bishop Collection
Archival Repository:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-fsa-a-02
Online Media:

Langdon Warner Report

Creator:
Warner, Langdon (1881-1955)  Search this
Names:
Warner, Langdon (1881-1955)  Search this
Extent:
2 Copies (Two copies of a bound volume of 226 typed pages, with 48 mounted silver gelatin prints with captions, 194p, 29 x 22 cm.)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Copies
Reports
Photographs
Place:
China
Japan
Angkor Wat (Cambodia)
Date:
1915
Scope and Contents:
A report prepared by archaeologist and art historian Langdon Warner on his travels of 1913-1914 to investigate the founding of an American school of Chinese archaeology to be established in Beijing. Warner's travels included Europe, Japan, Korea, China and Indo-China. Warner spoke with scholars, administrators and officials, and travelled to museums and archaeological sites. Warner traveled with his wife. The report contains two parts; the first being a summary of his travels, and the second, a series of recommendations for the proposed school.
Biographical / Historical:
Langdon Warner was an archaeologist and historian of Asian art in the first half of the 20th century. He was born on August 1, 1881 in Cambridge, Massachusetts and educated at Harvard University, which he graduated from in 1903. Between acting in various positions at museums across the country, most notably the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the Nelson-Atkins Museum, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Cleveland Museum of Art, and the Harvard Fogg Museum of Art, he travelled extensively in Asia. Including an 1913-14 trip sponsored by the Smithsonian Institution to explore the possibility of founding an American School of Chinese Archaeology in Beijing. Accompanied by his wife, their journey included visits to Europe, Japan, Korea, China, and Indochina. He spoke with scholars, administrators, and officials, and travelled to museums and archaeological sites. He compiled a two-part report: a summary of his travels and a series of recommendations for the proposed school.

During World War II, Warner taught a course on Japanese language, culture, and history to Civil Affairs Officers and acted as a Special Consultant for the U.S. Army's Monuments, Fine Arts and Archives program, the so-called "Monuments Men." He created the Official List of Monuments for Japan, China, Korea, and Thailand. Warner spent the summer of 1946 working as an Expert Consultant to the Arts and Monuments Division of the Civil Information and Education Section under the Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers. Upon his return to Massachusetts, he resumed working at the Fogg Museum of Art until his retirement in 1950. During his career, he wrote numerous books on Asian art such as The Enduring Art of Japan, The Long Old Road in China, and Japanese Sculpture of the Tempyo Period: Masterpieces of the Eighth Century. Warner died on June 9, 1955 in Cambridge, Massachusetts and was posthumously awarded the Order of the Sacred Treasures by the Japanese government for his efforts to preserve Japanese art and monuments during and after the war.
Local Numbers:
FSA A1994.07
Other Archival Materials:
Landon Warner Papers, circa late 18th century-1987 (bulk 1900-1959). Houghton Library, Harvard University 

Langdon Warner Photograph Collection, 1903-1950. Houghton Library, Harvard University. 

Langdon Warner Records, 1916-1929 (bulk 1917-1923). Philadelphia Museum of Art Archives. 
Provenance:
Gift 1994
Restrictions:
Collection is open for research.
Topic:
Archaeology  Search this
Art, Asian -- Collectors and collecting  Search this
Genre/Form:
Reports
Photographs
Citation:
The Warner Report, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives. Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., Gift of Katherine Graham, 1994.
Identifier:
FSA.A1994.07
Archival Repository:
Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-fsa-a1994-07
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Online Media:

Records

Topic:
Smithsonian scientific series
North American Wildflowers
Creator::
Smithsonian Institution. Office of the Secretary  Search this
Extent:
57.93 cu. ft. (5 record storage boxes) (104 document boxes) (2 half document boxes) (1 12x17 box) (oversize materials)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Manuscripts
Clippings
Black-and-white photographs
Date:
1890-1929
Descriptive Entry:
This record unit documents the growth and management of the Smithsonian from 1890 to 1929. Of special interest is the Institution's entry into the field of the fine arts through the creation of the National Gallery of Art and the Freer Gallery of Art. The Smithsonian continued to pursue a wide variety of other interests as well. Thus, the records deal with the following topics, among others: aviation; the American School of Archaeology in China; the Carnegie Institution of Washington, D.C.; the Cinchona Botanical Station, Jamaica; many international congresses; numerous national and international expositions, especially the Panama-California Exposition, 1912-1916, and the Panama-Pacific Exposition at San Francisco, 1914-1915; the George Washington Memorial Association; the Harriman Alaska series; the Kahn Foundation for Foreign Travel of American Teachers; the Koren Expedition to Siberia; the Langley-Wright aerodrome controversy; the Montezuma solar observatory at Calama, Chile; solar observations at Mount Harqua Hala, Arizona, and Mount Wilson, California; the Naples Zoological Station; the National Academy of Sciences; the National Research Council; publication of Mary Vaux Walcott's North American Wildflowers; the Biological Survey of the Panama Canal Zone; the Alfred Duane Pell Collection; the Research Corporation; the Roosevelt African Expedition; seismological studies; the Charles D. and Mary Vaux Walcott Research Fund; the Smithsonian Scientific Series; grants from the Hodgkins Fund; the Langley Aerodynamical Laboratory; and the National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics. The records include correspondence, minutes, announcements, publications, fiscal records, photographs, manuscripts, and news clippings.
Historical Note:
These records document the administration of the Smithsonian Institution during the tenure of Charles D. Walcott, its fourth Secretary, who served from 1907 to 1927. This period gave a deceptive appearance of strength to the Institution's life. Walcott himself, perhaps the last of the nineteenth-century scientist-politicians to combine a distinguished scientific reputation and polished ease in the world of political Washington, lent the Institution considerable support from his wide experience and many friends among the powerful of the day. The Institution's staff also boasted an able corps of scientists and senior administrators. Several new programs were developed during these years--the National Gallery of Art (now the National Museum of American Art) and the Freer Gallery of Art, in particular. These two galleries gave the Smithsonian its first real grounding in fine arts and rounded out the vision of the Institution as a place hospitable to all fields of learning.

Yet with the benefit of hindsight, these accomplishments can be seen to have masked real weakness, described either as the Smithsonian's failure to adapt its perception of itself to the changing world or as a lack of money.

When the Smithsonian was created in 1846 the corpus of its endowment was somewhat more than $500,000.00. It had few rivals elsewhere in the country. However, with the growth of large-scale private philanthropy after the Civil War, the Smithsonian's means shrank steadily in comparison to the endowments of leading institutions like the Sheffield Scientific School at Yale or new entrants like Stanford and the University of Chicago. No doubt this situation developed in part because the Smithsonian had no real alumni. It received a few small gifts from well-to-do members of its own staff and one moderate gift from Thomas George Hodgkins, a naturalized English eccentric. For all else it relied on small appropriations from the federal government, for which it performed certain services such as curating the collections of the National Museum. Coupled with meager financial resources was the Regents' suspicion of new and nonscientific endeavors. It is likely, for instance, that the Regents would have refused Charles Lang Freer's gift of a gallery of oriental art in 1906, had Theodore Roosevelt not obliged them to accept it. In the same way, the gift of certain patents on electrostatic precipitators by Frederic G. Cottrell in 1911 was politely shunted onto other shoulders, leaving the Smithsonian a remote beneficiary of the income. The Smithsonian's aloofness was in sharp contrast to the willingness of other institutions to accept such gifts. How this attitude arose is not clear. Perhaps it was an unconscious extension of Joseph Henry's early determination to associate the Smithsonian's name only with "worthy" purposes. However that may be, the Smithsonian was very late in the field in trying to augment its endowment. Walcott had begun to plan a campaign to raise $10,000,000.00--documented in record unit 46--which collapsed with his untimely death in 1927. Thus the Institution was to enter the era of the Depression in very straitened circumstances.
Topic:
Aeronautics  Search this
Museums -- Administration  Search this
Seismology  Search this
Paleontology  Search this
Genre/Form:
Manuscripts
Clippings
Black-and-white photographs
Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 45, Smithsonian Institution, Office of the Secretary, Records
Identifier:
Record Unit 45
See more items in:
Records
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-sia-faru0045

Folder 4 American School of Archeology in China, Minutes of the General Committee, 1913. The American School of Archeology in China was begun as a proposed joint project of the Archeological Institute of America and the Smithsonian Institution in 1912...

Collection Creator::
Smithsonian Institution. Office of the Secretary  Search this
Container:
Box 3 of 112
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 45, Smithsonian Institution, Office of the Secretary, Records
See more items in:
Records
Records / Series 1: CORRESPONDENCE, 1890-1929. Arranged alphabetically and chronologically. / Box 3
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru0045-refidd1e732

Folders 5-9 American School of Archeology in China correspondence, 1912-1915, 1917-1924

Collection Creator::
Smithsonian Institution. Office of the Secretary  Search this
Container:
Box 3 of 112
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 45, Smithsonian Institution, Office of the Secretary, Records
See more items in:
Records
Records / Series 1: CORRESPONDENCE, 1890-1929. Arranged alphabetically and chronologically. / Box 3
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru0045-refidd1e743

Folder 10 American School of Archeology in China, Langdon Warner's report of his trip through Europe and China, 1913-1914

Collection Creator::
Smithsonian Institution. Office of the Secretary  Search this
Container:
Box 3 of 112
Type:
Archival materials
Collection Citation:
Smithsonian Institution Archives, Record Unit 45, Smithsonian Institution, Office of the Secretary, Records
See more items in:
Records
Records / Series 1: CORRESPONDENCE, 1890-1929. Arranged alphabetically and chronologically. / Box 3
Archival Repository:
Smithsonian Institution Archives
EDAN-URL:
ead_component:sova-sia-faru0045-refidd1e755

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