Correspondence, castings record, financial materials, photographs and printed materials relating primarily to the work of the Bronze Division of the Ames Manufacturing Company.
Professional and personal correspondence, chiefly of James Tyler Ames, with sculptors, architects, government officials, and colleagues, including his brother, Nathan Peabody Ames, Henry Kirke Brown, Randolph Rogers, and Thomas Ustick Walter. A castings record (16 p.) contains expenses and final prices of bronze castings, a printed list of "Bronze Works Executed by the Ames Manufacturing Company," and photographs of completed work. There are also an expense account for the Lincoln National Monument artillery and cavalry groups, lists of expenses relating to "Bronze Castings for Washington and his Horse," the (Benjamin) "Franklin Statue," and other works. Photographs are of works cast by the Ames Company and of unidentified works, of Ames' artisans, of a room in James Ames' house with framed medallions of Washington and Franklin on the wall, and of a head of Washington and a head of his horse in Thomas Ball's studio; reports by the architect of the Capitol extension, and the U.S. Art Commission (1860); Ames Company promotional items; a printed narrative of the incidents connected with the statue of Washington in Union Square by Henry Kirke Brown; and clippings relating to various statues.
Biographical / Historical:
The Ames Manufacturing Company, Chicopee, Massachusetts, was founded in 1835 by James Tyler Ames and his brother, Nathan Peabody Ames. The company manufactured small tools, cotton machinery, swords, cannons, and did casting of bells. It began manufacturing large bronze statuary circa 1850.
Donated 1986 by Malcolm Stearns, Jr., who purchased them from Parke Bernet, New York, in the 1960s. There are numerous notations on the backs of letters and photographs. It is not known who added this information.
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. Contact Reference Services for more information.
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.
Use of original material requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact References Services for more information.
Edgar P. Richardson papers, 1814-1996, bulk 1921-1996. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Funding for the processing of this collection was provided by the Smithsonian Institution Collections Care and Preservation Fund.