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Herbert Waide Hemphill papers

Hemphill, Herbert Waide  Search this
Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Center  Search this
Centennial Exhibition (1876 : Philadelphia, Pa.)  Search this
Exposition Universelle de Paris (1878 : Paris, France)  Search this
Folk Art Society of America  Search this
Museum of International Folk Art (N.M.)  Search this
National Museum of American Art (U.S.)  Search this
Aiken, Gayleen  Search this
Bogun, Maceptaw, Rev.  Search this
Borkowski, Mary  Search this
Brice, Bruce  Search this
Carpenter, Miles B. (Miles Burkholder), 1889-  Search this
Coins, Raymond  Search this
Crittenden, Varick A.  Search this
Dinsmoor, Samuel Perry, 1843-1932  Search this
Donovan, Carrie  Search this
Fancher, John W.  Search this
Finster, Howard, 1916-2001  Search this
Flanagan, Thos. J. (Thomas Jefferson), b. 1890  Search this
Fowler, Tim  Search this
Gatto, Victor Joseph, 1893-1965  Search this
Ghostley, Alice, 1926-2007  Search this
Goins, Vernon  Search this
Hall, Michael D., 1941-  Search this
Hamblett, Theora, 1895-1977  Search this
Hartigan, Lynda Roscoe  Search this
Harvey, Bessie, 1929-  Search this
Hawkins, William Lawrence, 1895-1990  Search this
Hicks, Tiny  Search this
Holley, Lonnie  Search this
Hunter, Clementine  Search this
James, A. Everette (Alton Everette), 1938-  Search this
Jennings, James Harold  Search this
Jones, S. L. (Shields Landon), 1901-  Search this
Jordan, John  Search this
Josephson, Nancy, 1955-  Search this
Klumpp, Gustave, 1902-1974  Search this
Lisk, Charles  Search this
Little, Roy  Search this
Lopez, George  Search this
Maldonado, Alexander Aramburo, 1901-1989  Search this
McCarthy, Justin, 1891-1977  Search this
Merrill, James Ingram  Search this
Morgan, Gertrude  Search this
Mr. Imagination, 1948-  Search this
Nathaniel, Inez  Search this
O'Kelley, Mattie Lou  Search this
Orth, Kevin, 1961-  Search this
Patterson, Clayton  Search this
Prince, Daniel C.  Search this
Prince, Neal A.  Search this
Robertson, Royal  Search this
Rowe, Nellie Mae, 1900-1982  Search this
Smith, Fred, 1886-1975  Search this
Smith, Robert E., 1926-  Search this
Smither, John  Search this
Smither, Stephanie  Search this
Spies, Jim  Search this
St. EOM, 1908-1986  Search this
Terrillion, Veronica  Search this
Tolliver, Mose, 1920-  Search this
Tolson, Edgar, 1904-1984  Search this
Walters, Hubert  Search this
Weissman, Julia  Search this
Young, Purvis, 1943-  Search this
Zeldis, Malcah  Search this
26.7 Linear feet
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Video recordings
Sound recordings
bulk 1876-1998
The papers of folk art collector and museum curator Herbert Waide Hemphill date from 1776-1998, bulk 1876-1998, and measure 26.7 linear feet. Found within the papers are biographical materials, personal business records, files documenting his collecting, writings, art work, minutes of meetings, a scrapbook, printed material including exhibition and auction announcements and catalogs, and miscellaneous artifacts. The collection also contains numerous photographs of Hemphill, family members, his residences, friends and colleagues, exhibitions, travel, and art work. Sound and video recordings include interviews of Hemphill.
Scope and Content Note:
The papers of folk art collector and museum curator Herbert Waide Hemphill date from 1776-1998, bulk 1876-1998, and measure 26.7 linear feet. Found within the papers are biographical materials, personal business records, files documenting his collecting, writings, art work, minutes of meetings, a scrapbook, printed material including exhibition and auction announcements and catalogs, and miscellaneous artifacts. The collection also contains numerous photographs of Hemphill, family members, his residences, friends and colleagues, exhibitions, travel, and art work. Sound and video recordings include interviews of Hemphill.

Biographical material includes photocopies of Hemphill's birth certificate and passport, social security cards, and international health card, genealogical notes, an evaluation of his school work, membership cards, award certificates, address books, and an engagement calendar containing very brief annotations of his activities.

Correspondence documents Hemphill's affairs with miscellaneous museums and art institutions, discussing his presentation of lectures, exhibitions, and loans from his collection to organizations including the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Collection, the Folk Art Society of America, the Museum of International Folk Art, and the Smithsonian Institution's American Art Museum.

Hemphill's correspondence with friends and colleagues discuss collecting activities and pursuit of newly discovered folk art and artists. Many of the letters are from artists. Correspondents include Varick A. Crittenden, Michael D. Hall, A. Everette James, Daniel C. Prince, Neal A. Prince, and artists Rev. Maceptaw Bogun, Mary Borkowski, Tim Fowler, Joseph Victor Gatto, S. L. Jones, Gustav Klumpp, Roy Little, George Lopez, Kevin Orth, and Malcah Zeldis. There are also scattered letters from artists Miles Burkholder Carpenter, John W. Fancher, Rev. Howard Finster, William Hawkins, Sister Gertrude Morgan, Mr. Imagination, Mattie Lou O'Kelley, Clayton Patterson, St. EOM, and Mose Tolliver. One letter from Stephanie and John Smither is etched on a bone.

Personal business records include both legal and financial documents. There are wills for Hemphill, his mother, and for his friend Neal A. Prince. The records also include leases, insurance records, contracts, grant proposals, loan agreements, deeds of gift, price lists, consignment records, tax records, and miscellaneous receipts. Cancelled checks relate to Hemphill's collecting interests and activities, and include payments to artists for their work. There are court papers documenting a lawsuit by Hemphill's landlord who was attempting to evict him.

Art work consists of a sketchbook by Roy Little, a set of hand-cut Japanese mask designs, a collage of Polaroid photographs taped to glass created by Rev. Howard Finster, a hand-made book by Nancy Josephson, and miscellaneous drawings, watercolors, and prints by various artists including Justin McCarthy, Inez Nathaniel, and Nellie Mae Rowe.

Notes and writings include card files of artists, extensive bibliographic card files, and scattered notes on artists including Miles Carpenter, Raymond Coins, Rev. Howard Finster, Mattie Lou O'Kelley, Royal Robertson, Veronica Terrillion, Mose Tolliver, and Bill Traylor. Also found are lists of artists, patrons, and art work, miscellaneous notes, and minutes of meetings. Writings by Hemphill and others including Michael D. Hall, Lynda Roscoe Hartigan, A. Everett James, and Julia Weissman, consist of reports, typescripts, and poems concerning a wide range of art-related topics and travel.

A scrapbook consists of unbound pages of clippings and newsletters about Hemphill, his collection, and exhibitions of folk art.

There is extensive additional printed material illustrating Hemphill's many interests. This series primarily consists of clippings and exhibition announcements and catalogs for mainstream artists as well as folk artists. Also included are auction announcements and catalogs, announcements for festivals, press releases, and calendars of events. Numerous booklets, brochures, programs, menus, business cards, and novelty postcards concern a variety of topics including worldwide travel, the sale of art work, miscellaneous galleries, museums, organizations, conferences, schools, lectures, antiques and craft shops, films, publications, restaurants, household items, historical topics, and miscellaneous artists including Miles Carpenter, S. P. Dinsmoor, Lonnie Holley, Clementine Hunter, and Veronica Terrillion. There are also autographed copies of booklets The Black Swan and Other Poems by James Merrill, and The Blood of Jesus by Thomas Jefferson Flanagan. Novelty postcards range from photographs of Elvis Presley to cards with amusing captions or cartoon jokes. There is also sheet music by Charles Trenet. Miscellaneous printed material includes several eighteenth-century newspapers and a 1776 thirty shilling note from New Jersey.

Photographs are of Hemphill, family members, his residences, friends and colleagues including style editor Carrie Donovan, artist Rev. Howard Finster dancing at an exhibition opening, actress Alice Ghostley, Michael D. Hall, circus performers Vernon Goins and Tiny Hicks, Smithsonian curator Lynda Roscoe Hartigan, Neal A. Prince, and Jim Spies. Photographs of exhibitions include stereographic views of the International Exhibition in Philadelphia and the Exposition Universelle in Paris, and photographs of Hemphill's donation of his collection and its subsequent exhibition at the Smithsonian's American Art Museum. Travel photographs include views of South Dakota, Texas, the American West, Japan, Mexico, and The Netherlands.

Numerous photographs of art work sometimes include images of the artists with their work including Bruce Brice, Raymond Coins, John W. Fancher, Rev. Howard Finster, Theora Hamblett, Bessie Harvey, William Hawkins, James Harold Jennings, John Jordan, Charles Lisk, Alexander Maldonado, St. EOM, Fred Smith, Edgar Tolson, Hubert Walters, and Purvis Young. Some photographs of unattributed art work has been arranged by the state in which it is located and includes a Mardi Gras parade in Louisiana, a Mummer's parade in Pennsylvania, Lucy the Elephant-shaped building in New Jersey, and Holy Ghost Park in Wisconsin. Other photographs of unattributed art work include works on paper, paintings, sculpture, signs, collages, needlework, glass, ceramics, and architecture.

Sound and video recordings include a cassette from Hemphill's phone answering machine that contains only Hemphill's message to callers, cassette recordings of interviews with and concerning Hemphill, artist St. EOM, painter Robert E. Smith discussing his work, and the tour narration for a Smithsonian exhibition Made With Passion. There are videotapes about Hemphill and about artists Gayleen Aiken, Miller and Bryant, and Malcah Zeldis, and miscellaneous African American artists. There is also a videotape of an American Museum of Natural History tour group arriving in a succession of villages in Melanesia and Papua New Guinea where they are greeted by the native people and given the opportunity to purchase their art work.

Artifacts consist of a scattered assemblage of three-dimensional objects including three wooden "fringe" pieces from cigar store figures, ceramic fragments from a sword handle, a lock of horse hair, and a hand-painted View Master viewer souvenir from the opening of the American Visionary Art Museum in Baltimore. The View Master contains a disc of photographs of artists with their work including Vollis Simpson and Mary Frances Whitfield. Also included is a teacher's kit Little Adventures in Art containing four phonograph albums and four short film strips of slides showing art work in animal and bird forms.
The collection is arranged as 10 series; all series are arranged chronologically:

Missing Title

Series 1: Biographical Material, 1916-1997 (Box 1, 28; 12 folders)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1901-1998 (Boxes 1-5, 27- 28, OV 31; 4.0 linear feet)

Series 3: Personal Business Records, 1817-1997 (Box 5-7, 28; 2.0 linear feet)

Series 4: Art Work, 1911-1997 (Box 7, 32; 0.4 linear feet)

Series 5: Notes and Writings, 1938-1996 (Box 7-10, 28; 2.5 linear feet)

Series 6: Scrapbook, 1965-1976 (Box 10; 1 folder)

Series 7: Printed Material, 1776-1998 (Box 10-19, 28-29, OV 31; 9.5 linear feet)

Series 8: Photographs, 1876-1997 (Box 19-24, 29; 5.5 linear feet)

Series 9: Sound and Video Recordings, 1986-1991 (Box 25-26; 13 folders)

Series 10: Artifacts, 1968-1995 (Box 26, 30; 0.7 linear feet)
Biographical Note:
Herbert Waide Hemphill, Jr., (1929-1998) lived in New York city and was a prominent curator, historian, and collector of American folk art. Hemphill was one of the founding members of the Museum of American Folk Art, organized several large exhibitions of folk art, and co-authored Twentieth Century American Folk Art and Artist.

Hemphill was born on January 21, 1929 in Atlantic City, New Jersey, the son of businessman Herbert Waide Hemphill, Sr., and Emma Bryan Bradley Hemphill whose uncle, William Clark Bradley, was one of the owners of the Coca-Cola Company.

Hemphill was reared in his mother's home town of Columbus, Georgia, and attended Wynnton School. At the Lawrenceville School in New Jersey and the Solebury School in New Hope, Pennsylvania, Hemphill's principle interests were in art and theater. In 1948, he spent a year studying fine arts at Bard College under Stefan Hirsch, a painter and folk art collector.

Hemphill developed his interest in collecting while accompanying his mother on her shopping forays searching for Dresden china. His first acquisition was a wooden duck decoy purchased when he was seven years old. His early collections were of glass bottles, marbles, stamps, and puzzle jugs. In 1949, Hemphill moved to Manhattan and began to focus on modern European and American art and African sculpture, but after 1956 he concentrated exclusively on 19th and early 20th century American folk art. He often discovered artists during his extensive travels, especially in the American South.

In 1961, Hemphill became one of the six founding trustees of the Museum of Early American Folk Art, later named the Museum of American Folk Art, in New York City. Between 1964 and 1973, he was the museum's first curator and curated many exhibitions, helping to promote awareness of work created by self-taught or visionary artists. He later served as Trustee Emeritus for many years.

Between 1974 and 1988, Hemphill loaned portions of his extensive personal collection to 24 museums nationwide and in 1976, the American Bicentennial Commission selected works from his collection for a goodwill tour of Japan. He was named guest curator at the Brooklyn Museum in 1976 and at the Abby Aldrich Folk Art Collection in 1980, and often appeared as guest lecturer at various universities, the Smithsonian Institution, and at the Library of Congress. In 1986, Hemphill donated more than 400 folk art works to the Smithsonian Institution's American Art Museum, resulting in a landmark exhibition Made with Passion: The Hemphill Folk Art Collection of the National Museum of American Art.

Hemphill's publications include books Twentieth Century American Folk Art and Artists, co-authored with Julia Weissman in 1974, Folk Sculpture USA for the Brooklyn Museum in 1976, and Found in New York's North Country: The Folk Art of a Region, co-authored with Varick A. Chittenden in 1982 for the Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute.

Herbert Waide Hemphill, Jr. died on May 8, 1998 in New York City.
Herbert Waide Hemphill donated his papers in 5 installments between 1988 and 1996.
Use of original papers requires an appointment. Use of audiovisual materials with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.
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.
Art -- Collectors and collecting  Search this
Folk art -- Collectors and collecting  Search this
Curators -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Art -- Economic aspects  Search this
Video recordings
Sound recordings
Herbert Waide Hemphill papers, 1776-1998, bulk 1876-1998. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
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Herbert Waide Hemphill papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
Online Media:

The religious art of Theora Hamblett, sources of attitude and imagery / by Ella King Torrey

Torrey, Ella King  Search this
Physical description:
xix, 212 leaves, [92] leaves of plates : ill. ; 28 cm
Hamblett, Theora, 1895-1977  Search this
Artists  Search this
Call number:
N40.1.H19 T6
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries

Theora Hamblett paintings / by Theora Hamblett, in collaboration with Ed Meek and William S. Haynie

Hamblett, Theora 1895-1977  Search this
Meek, Ed  Search this
Haynie, William S  Search this
Hamblett, Theora 1895-1977  Search this
Physical description:
96 p. : col. ill. ; 31 cm
Call number:
N40.1.H19 M4
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries

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