2 Reels (ca. 150 items (on 2 partial microfilm reels))
Scope and Contents:
Letters, mainly from artists, and documents selected from the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's miscellaneous manuscript collection (Society Collection). Letters are to various people; 46 of them are to Townsend Ward and a few are to John A. McAllister, photographer. Many of the letters refer to paintings, portraits, commissions, and awards.
Writers of letters include: Edwin Austin Abbey, Mary Gertrude Abbey, F.W. Bayley, Albert Bierstadt, George Catlin, Joseph Ceracchi, John Gadsby Chapman, John Cheney, James Claypool, James Cox, F.O.C. Darley, Joseph Delaplaine, Humphrey Donnehue, William Dunlap, Pierre Eugene Du Simitiere, S. Eliot, Charles Fevret De Saint-Memin, Charles Dana Gibson, Harold Edgar Gillingham, Horatio Greenough, George Harding, Levi Hollingsworth, William Morris Hunt, Daniel Huntington, Henry Inman, Horatio Gates Jones, James Reid Lambdin, Will Hicok Low, Edward Dalton Marchant, William Henry Moody, John Neagle, Albert Newsam, Bass Otis, Thomas Paine, Charles Willson Peale, Franklin Peale, James Peale, Jr., Mary Jane Peale, Rembrandt Peale, Titian Ramsay Peale, Joseph Pennell, Clement Penrose, Robert Piggot, Thomas Buchanan Read, William Trost Richards, Thomas Prichard Rossiter, Peter Frederick Rothermel, William Rush, John Sartain, Stephen Alonzo Schooff (to Townsend Ward), Russell Smith, Charles H. Stephens, Thomas Sully, Philip Syng, John Vanderlyn, N.P. Willis, Alexander Wilson and Patience Wright.
Among the recipients of letters are Archibald Alexander, David S. Brown, William Belcher, Col. Brodhead, B. Burrell, Carey & Hart, Edward L. Carey, Henry C. Carey, Miss Clarke, Mr. Curren, Joseph Delaplaine, John Dickinson, Dr. Dickson, William Dillwyn, William Duane, James B. Elliott, Mrs. Langdon Elwyn, Mantle(?) Fielding, John W. Francis, Charles P. Hayes, David Hosack, Mr. Howell, Major William Jackson, Horatio Gates Jones, John W. Jordan, H.H. Kjmball, C.G. Leland, Joseph Leidy, J.B. Lippincott, George Livermore, James Madison, J. Hill Martin, John McAllister, James McMurtrie, James Monaghan, J. Murray, Albert Cook Myers, Rebecca and Isabella Nathans, John Neagle, C.S. Ogden, John Paca, Charles Willson Peale, Rembrandt Peale, David Rittenhouse, Albert Rosenthal, John Sartain, Jacob Schreiner, James Shrigley, James Ross Snowden, W.D. Snyder, Dr. Sommerville, J.C. Stanbridge, F.D. Stone, Henry Troth, Mr. Vaux, Townsend Ward, William Hill Wells, G.M. Wharton, Thomas Wharton, Henry J. Williams, and Samuel B. Wylie.
Other items include a sonnet of S.T. Coleridge by Washington Allston; business card of Pennel Beale; catalog of medals and coins of silver in the possession of Hon. John Smith compiled by Du Simitière, 1772; printed address by Mrs. John C. Montgomery soliciting donations for the repair of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, destroyed by fire, 1845; William Morris Hunt's admission ticket to Peale's Museum, 1836, stating his height and weight; description of objects on display at the Peale Museum, 1820; a photograph and business card of Benjamin Randolph; invitations and notes to Gilbert Stuart; typescript by Frank H. Taylor on lithography, 1923; subscription book for engravings of paintings by John Trumbull; and a page from John Archibald Woodside's daybook, 1802-1803.
Microfilmed by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania for the Archives of American Art, 1955.
The Archives of American art does not own the original papers. Use is limited to the microfilm copy.
Papers gathered by Ednah Cheney, wife of Seth Wells Cheney, for her memoirs of the two brothers, Seth and John Cheney, prominent 19th century engravers, composed of correspondence, clippings, notes, lists, a diary, and family photographs.
Included are 89 letters to Ednah Dow Cheney, 1873-1897, most from authorities on engraving, chiefly, Sylvester Rosa Koehler and Charles Henry Hart concerning the location and identification of engravings pursuant to compilation of a Cheney catalog; a letter describing an 1892 meeting of the National Suffrage Association; 2 lists of casts for a sculpture collection; a diary, August 1848, kept by Anna Cabot Lowell during Seth Cheney's stay while executing family portraits, describing his activities and character; a phrenological study of Cheney; 33 family photographs and daguerrotypes of John Cheney's drawings (not microfilmed); and miscellany.
Biographical / Historical:
Seth Wells Cheney was an engraver, as was his brother John Cheney, of Manchester, Connecticut. Ednah Cheney wrote Memoirs of Seth Wells Cheney, 1881, and Memoirs of John Cheney, 1889.
Donated 1960 by Alice Williams (married to Corcoran Gallery of Art director Hermann Warner Williams, Jr.), who inherited the Cheney's studio remains.
Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Microfilmed materials must be consulted on microfilm.