Skip to main content Smithsonian Institution

Search Results

Collections Search Center
5 documents - page 1 of 1

Oral history interview with Harold James Brennan, 1979 Sept. 5 and 1982 Feb. 16

Interviewee:
Brennan, Harold James, 1903-1989  Search this
Interviewer:
Brown, Robert F  Search this
Subject:
Clayter, Frederick  Search this
School for American Crafts  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Topic:
Handicraft -- United States  Search this
Metal-work  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Theme:
Craft  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)12961
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)214564
AAA_collcode_brenna79
Theme:
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_oh_214564
Online Media:

Harold James Brennan papers, 1955-1974

Creator:
Brennan, Harold James, 1903-1989  Search this
Topic:
Handicraft -- United States  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Theme:
Lives of American Artists  Search this
Craft  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)6800
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)208927
AAA_collcode_brenharo
Theme:
Lives of American Artists
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_208927

Oral history interview with Harold James Brennan

Interviewee:
Brennan, Harold James, 1903-1989  Search this
Interviewer:
Brown, Robert F.  Search this
Names:
School for American Crafts  Search this
Clayter, Frederick  Search this
Extent:
3 Items (sound files, digital, wav file)
36 Pages (Transcript)
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Pages
Sound recordings
Interviews
Date:
1979 Sept. 5 and 1982 Feb. 16
Scope and Contents:
An interview with Harold J. Brennan conducted 1979 Sept. 5 and 1982 Feb. 16, by Robert F. Brown, for the Archives of American Art.
Brennan discusses his architectural and art historical training at Carnegie Institute of Technology (now Carnegie Mellon University) and at Harvard University in the 1930s; his artistic training in metalwork; the highlights of his career; and his role in the development of the School for American Craftsmen. He mentions Louis C. Tiffany and Frederick Clayter.
Biographical / Historical:
Harold J. Brennan (1903-1989) was a crafts administrator and educator.
General:
Originally recorded on 1 sound cassette and 1 sound tape reel. Reformatted in 2010 as 3 digital wav files. Duration is 2 hr., 25 min.
Provenance:
These interviews are 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 administrators.
Occupation:
Arts administrators -- Interviews  Search this
Artisans  Search this
Topic:
Handicraft -- United States  Search this
Metal-work  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Genre/Form:
Sound recordings
Interviews
Identifier:
AAA.brenna79
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9daeaa262-2917-4a90-84d8-713657d892ac
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-brenna79
Online Media:

Harold James Brennan papers

Creator:
Brennan, Harold James, 1903-1989  Search this
Extent:
88 Items
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Date:
1955-1974
Scope and Contents:
Exhibition catalogues; typescript of a lecture, "The Arts and Crafts in Retrospect in this the 150th Anniversary of the Rochester Institute of Technology," by Brennan, Dean Emeritus, and Stanley H Witmeyer, Associate Dean Emeritus, College of Fine and Applied Arts, Rochester Institute of Technology; résumés of craftsmen; a press release and other news items; and magazine articles by Brennan on American crafts and craftsmen.
Biographical / Historical:
Craftsman and educator.
Provenance:
Donated 1979-1982 by Harold James Brennan.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
Occupation:
Artisans  Search this
Topic:
Handicraft -- United States  Search this
Decorative arts  Search this
Identifier:
AAA.brenharo
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw935f868b8-cd6e-409e-8337-7c2b16b1220c
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-brenharo

William J. and Jane Brown papers

Creator:
Brown, William J. (William Joseph), 1923-1992  Search this
Brown, Jane Brennan, 1931-  Search this
Names:
Haystack Mountain School of Crafts  Search this
Penland School of Crafts  Search this
Bailey, Dan  Search this
Berensohn, Paulus  Search this
Brennan, Harold James, 1903-1989  Search this
Ebendorf, Robert, 1938-  Search this
Ehle, John, 1925-  Search this
Hallman, Ted, 1933-  Search this
Lipofsky, Marvin, 1938-2016  Search this
Morgan, Lucy, 1889-1981  Search this
Perisho, Flossie  Search this
Takaezu, Toshiko  Search this
Extent:
7.9 Linear feet
0.32 Gigabytes
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Gigabytes
Interviews
Photographs
Sketches
Sound recordings
Video recordings
Date:
circa 1940-2014
Summary:
The papers of William J. and Jane Brown date from circa 1940-2014 and measure 7.9 linear feet and 0.32 gigabytes. The collection is comprised of biographical material, correspondence, interviews, writings and notes, printed material and documentaries, photographs and moving images, and administrative records from the Penland School of Crafts where William served as director from 1962 to 1983.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of William J. and Jane Brown date from circa 1940-2014 and measure 7.9 linear feet. The collection is comprised of biographical material, correspondence, interviews, writings and notes, printed material and documentaries, photographs and moving images, and administrative records from the Penland School of Crafts where William served as director from 1962 to 1983.

Biographical materials consists of awards, business cards, annotated calendars, consignment forms, material from Haystack Mountain School of Crafts, resumes, sketches, and student documents. Correspondence is with artists, former students, instructors, local residents, Paulus Berensohn, Robert Ebendorf, Theodore Hallman, Lucy Morgan, Toshiko Takaezu, and others.

Sound and video recordings are of interviews with Bill and Jane Brown, Lucy Morgan, and "Flossie" Perisho regarding personal and Penland history. One transcript of Marvin Lipofsky's conversation with Bill is also included. Bill's writings are on industrial design, directing Penland, and mankind. Two notebooks contain daily logs, sketches, and other notes. Notes by Bill and Jane are on inventions, John Ehle, metal history, poems, and other topics. Other writings are about Bill and a manuscript on craftsman education by Harold J. Brennan.

Penland's administrative records contain files documenting the board of trustees, residents program, a special 2-week session, artwork, Bill Brown's Glass Studio dedication ceremony schedule, a certificate of incorporation, financial material, grant proposals, and maps. Also found are records of Penland's 50th birthday celebration, including a video recording of "A Quest" by Dan Bailey.

Books, booklets, four documentary video recordings, exhibition catalogs and announcements, flyers, pamphlets, periodicals, postcards, posters, and stickers and patches designed by Bill are in printed materials. Photographs and slides are of Bill and Jane; family and friends; works of art; and of Penland's grounds, students, and faculty along with photographs and video recordings documenting Penland's history.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as seven series.

Series 1: Biographical Materials, 1948-2011 (0.6 linear feet; Boxes 1, 9)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1949-2014 (1.8 linear feet; Boxes 1-3, 9)

Series 3: Interviews, 1968-1991 (0.4 linear feet; Box 3)

Series 4: Writings and Notes, circa 1950-2005 (0.2 linear feet; Box 3)

Series 5: Penland School of Crafts Administrative Records, 1954-1995 (1.1 linear feet; Boxes 3-4, 9)

Series 6: Printed Materials and Documentaries, 1942-2005 (1.8 linear feet, 0.32 GB; Boxes 4-6, 9; ER01)

Series 7: Photographic Materials and Moving Images, circa 1940-2011 (2.0 linear feet; Boxes 6-10, RD 11)
Biographical / Historical:
William "Bill" J. Brown (1923-1992) was a designer and educator who was married to Jane Brown (1932- ), an arts administrator. They lived in Bakersville, North Carolina.

Bill Brown was born in Flint, Michigan in 1923. He studied at the Cranbrook Academy of Art receiving a bachelor of fine art in 1949, a master of fine art in 1950, and was chosen to work at Corning Glass Works for a summer. After his studies, he taught at the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts and at the University of Delaware. In 1962 Lucy Morgan, who founded the Penland School of Crafts in 1929 in North Carolina, retired and offered the position of director to Bill. At the time, the school focused on traditional mountain crafts. As director, Bill changed the emphasis of the school to the advancement of professional craftsmen and the expansion of media to include iron and glass. He began a resident artist program that allowed artists to develop their skills at a low cost. Together, Bill and Jane created a supportive community of craftsmen that attracted renowned artists to teach and work at Penland. Bill resigned as director in 1983 but remained a respected member of the arts community. He earned several awards including the North Carolina Award in the Fine Arts in 1991.

Jane Brown graduated from the University of Delaware with a bachelor of arts in education and a master's degree in special education. Jane studied the Alexander Technique, a technique that can be used to improve the performance of dancers and musicians.

Bill Brown died in 1992. After his death, Jane participated in the dedication of the Bill Brown Glass Studio at Penland during a Glass Arts Society conference in 1995. She continues to live in Bakersville, North Carolina.
Related Materials:
Also found at the Archives of American Art is an oral history interview with William J. Brown and his wife Jane Brown conducted on January 19, 1991 and March 2, 1991 by Jane Kessler.
Provenance:
The portions of the William J. and Jane Brown papers that were lent for microfilming in 1991 by Jane Brown were subsequently donated by Jane Brown 1995 and 2015 along with additional papers.
Restrictions:
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.
Topic:
Art -- Study and teaching  Search this
Artisans--North Carolina  Search this
Arts administrators--North Carolina  Search this
Industrial design  Search this
Handicraft--Study and teaching--United States  Search this
Handicraft--United States  Search this
Function:
Art schools -- North Carolina
Genre/Form:
Interviews
Photographs
Sketches
Sound recordings
Video recordings
Citation:
William J. and Jane Brown papers, circa 1940-2014. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.browwill
See more items in:
William J. and Jane Brown papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
GUID:
https://n2t.net/ark:/65665/mw9907be991-414d-4c5f-b92d-b8729175c574
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-browwill

Modify Your Search







or


Narrow By
  • Archives of American Art