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Maurice Becker papers, circa 1910-1970

Creator:
Becker, Maurice, 1889-1975  Search this
Subject:
Neumann, I.B. (Israel Ber)  Search this
Thiel, Philip  Search this
Lancaster, Elizabeth G. (Elizabeth Greig),  Search this
Becker, Dorothy Baldwin  Search this
Artists for Victory, Inc  Search this
Topic:
Liberator (New York, N.Y.: 1918)  Search this
Masses (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
New masses  Search this
Painting, American  Search this
Cartooning  Search this
Politics in art  Search this
Caricatures and cartoons  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)8878
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211063
AAA_collcode_beckmaur
Theme:
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211063
Online Media:

Maurice Becker papers

Topic:
Liberator (New York, N.Y.: 1918)
New masses
Masses (New York, N.Y.)
Creator:
Becker, Maurice, 1889-1975  Search this
Names:
Artists for Victory, Inc  Search this
Becker, Dorothy Baldwin  Search this
Lancaster, Elizabeth G. (Elizabeth Grieg), 1889-  Search this
Neumann, J. B. (Jsrael Ber)  Search this
Extent:
2.3 Linear feet
Type:
Collection descriptions
Archival materials
Prints
Photographs
Sketches
Watercolors
Paintings
Date:
circa 1910-1970
Summary:
The papers of painter and political cartoonist Maurice Becker measure 2.3 linear feet and date from circa 1910 to 1970. Found within the papers are biographical material; personal and professional correspondence; writings; printed material, including radical labor and political periodicals; artwork; and photographs of Becker, his family and friends, and his artwork.
Scope and Contents:
The papers of painter and political cartoonist Maurice Becker measure 2.3 linear feet and date from circa 1910 to 1970. Found within the papers are biographical material; personal and professional correspondence; writings; printed material, including radical labor and political periodicals; artwork; and photographs of Becker, his family and friends, and his artwork.

Biographical materials consist of a curriculum vitae and a list of artworks.

Correspondence is primarily with Becker's family, friends, and business associates. There are letters from his wife, Dorothy Baldwin Becker, a letter from friend and artist Elizabeth Lancaster, and a letter from Artists for Victory. There is also a letter from Becker to his friend J. B. Neumann containing a draft of Becker's will authorizing Neumann to sell and distribute his paintings upon his death or incapacitation; a letter of invitation to artists and writers interested in reviving a new Masses style journal; and letters from magazine editors regarding freelance commissions.

Printed material includes bulletins, clippings and labor newspapers, exhibition announcements and catalogs, periodicals, press releases, and miscellaneous printed material. Periodicals include whole issues of Liberator, The Masses, New Masses, and One Big Union Monthly, where Becker's political cartoons were frequently featured.

Artwork includes paintings, over 800 graphite and pen and ink sketches, watercolors, and prints depicting Becker's figure drawings, caricatures, portrait drawings of men and women, and sketches of animals and landscapes. Many of these sketches were the basis for panels that later appeared in the New York Tribune, The Masses, and Liberator.

Photographs are of Maurice Becker with family and friends, and five photographs of his artwork.
Arrangement:
The collection is arranged as 6 series.

Series 1: Biographical materials, 1925-1964 (2 folders; Box 1)

Series 2: Correspondence, 1919-1964 (4 folders; Box 1)

Series 3: Writings, circa 1920-1960 (2 folders; Box 1)

Series 4: Printed material, circa 1910-1970 (1 linear foot; Box 1, 4, OV 5)

Series 5: Artwork, circa 1910-1965 (1.2 linear feet; Box 1-3, OV 6-8)

Series 6: Photographs, circa 1910-1966 (3 folders; Box 3)
Biographical / Historical:
Painter and political cartoonist Maurice Becker (1889-1975) lived and worked in New York City, New York and Tioga County, Pennsylvania, and was a frequent contributor to contemporary periodicals of the 1910s.

Becker was born in Nizhni-Novgorod (now Gorky), Russia to Isor and Rose Becker. In 1892, his family immigrated to the United States and settled in the Jewish community of Manhattan's Lower East Side. After graduating from high school, Becker took night classes in bookkeeping and art, studied with Robert Henri and Hugo Boss, and worked days as a sign painter and garment factory worker. He began illustrating for the New York Tribune and Scripps newspapers from 1914 to 1915, and contributed artwork to numerous contemporary periodicals in the 1910s, including Harper's Weekly, Saturday Review, and Metropolitan. Becker was also a frequent contributor to more radical political journals, including The Masses, Liberator, and One Big Union Monthly.

In 1918, he married Dorothy Baldwin, who was a registered Socialist. After stating his conscientious objection to World War I, Becker traveled to Mexico to avoid the draft and was arrested upon his return in 1919. After his trial and sentencing, he served 4 months of hard labor before President Wilson's commutation of all objectors to the war. From 1921 to 1923, Becker lived in Mexico working as an illustrator for El Pulsa de México, and began to devote himself to painting full time.

After his return to New York City, Becker held a series of one-man shows at the Whitney Studio Club (1924-1928), J.B. Neumann Gallery (1924-1931), and Delphic Studios (1930). Becker was a member of the Society of Independent Artists and the Artists' League of America and remained a pacifist for the rest of his life. He died in 1975.
Separated Materials:
There are scattered Maurice Becker papers found within the Art Young papers at the Tamiment Library in New York. These were loaned to the Archives in 1971 for microfilming on reel 96. These papers are not described in the container inventory of this finding aid but include approximately 20 postcards, catalogs, sketches, photographs, and other printed materials.

Duplicate magazines, catalogs, and clippings were transferred to the National Portrait Gallery Library in 1977.
Provenance:
Maurice Becker donated his papers in several increments between 1962-1966.
Restrictions:
Use of original papers requires an appointment.
Rights:
The Maurice Becker papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Topic:
Painters -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Politics in art  Search this
Caricatures and cartoons -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Painting, American -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Cartooning -- United States  Search this
Cartoonists -- New York (State) -- New York  Search this
Genre/Form:
Prints
Photographs
Sketches
Watercolors
Paintings
Citation:
Maurice Becker papers, circa 1910-1970. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Identifier:
AAA.beckmaur
See more items in:
Maurice Becker papers
Archival Repository:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
ead_collection:sova-aaa-beckmaur

Margret Craver Withers papers, 1908-2016

Creator:
Withers, Margret Craver, 1907-2010  Search this
Subject:
Kuhn, Irene  Search this
Gilpin, Laura  Search this
Hill, Reginald H.  Search this
Fleming, Erik  Search this
Craig, Nancy  Search this
Institute of Contemporary Art (Boston, Mass.)  Search this
Handy & Harman (Firm)  Search this
Towle Mfg. Company  Search this
Type:
Sound recordings
Scrapbooks
Interviews
Sketchbooks
Topic:
Women artists  Search this
Art metal-work  Search this
Silverwork  Search this
Artists' studios  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)9358
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)211554
AAA_collcode_withmarg
Theme:
Sketches & Sketchbooks
Women
Lives of American Artists
Craft
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_211554

Maurice Brazil and Charles Prendergast selected papers, [ca.1865]-1992

Creator:
Prendergast, Maurice Brazil, 1858-1924  Search this
Prendergast, Charles, 1863-1948  Search this
Subject:
Glackens, William J. (William James)  Search this
Brooks, Van Wyck  Search this
Hartley, Marsden  Search this
Pach, Walter  Search this
Glackens, Edith  Search this
Sargent, John Singer  Search this
Glackens, Ira  Search this
Topic:
Modernism (Art)  Search this
Art, Modern  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)13419
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)214583
AAA_collcode_prenmaur
Theme:
Diaries
Art Movements and Schools
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_214583

Kenneth Russell Chamberlain papers, 1917-1972

Creator:
Chamberlain, Kenneth Russell, 1892-  Search this
Subject:
Fitzgerald, Richard  Search this
Topic:
Liberator (New York, N.Y.: 1918)  Search this
Masses (New York, N.Y.)  Search this
Political cartoons  Search this
Caricatures and cartoons  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA_CollID)7365
(DSI-AAA_SIRISBib)209520
AAA_collcode_chamkenn
Theme:
Lives of American Artists
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_coll_209520

Interview with Marcia Marcus

Creator:
Marcus, Marcia, 1928-  Search this
Seckler, Dorothy Gees, 1910-1994  Search this
Subject:
Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art  Search this
New York University  Search this
Type:
Sound Recording
Place:
New York, N.Y.
Provincetown, Mass.
Date:
1967 August 28
Topic:
Figurative painting  Search this
Self-portraits  Search this
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)13819
See more items in:
Dorothy Gees Seckler collection of sound recordings relating to art and artists, 1962-1976
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_13819

Interview with Giorgio Cavallon

Creator:
Cavallon, Giorgio, 1904-1989  Search this
Seckler, Dorothy Gees, 1910-1994  Search this
Subject:
Hofmann, Hans  Search this
American Abstract Artists  Search this
Type:
Sound Recording
Place:
Italy
New York, N.Y.
Provincetown, Mass.
Date:
1966 August 28
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)13822
See more items in:
Dorothy Gees Seckler collection of sound recordings relating to art and artists, 1962-1976
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_13822

Interview with Elise Asher

Creator:
Asher, Elise, 1914-2004  Search this
Seckler, Dorothy Gees, 1910-1994  Search this
Subject:
De Groot, Nanno  Search this
Kline, Franz  Search this
Motherwell, Robert Burns  Search this
Pollock, Jackson  Search this
Type:
Sound Recording
Place:
New York, N.Y.
Provincetown, Mass.
Date:
1976 August 17
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)13823
See more items in:
Dorothy Gees Seckler collection of sound recordings relating to art and artists, 1962-1976
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_13823

Interview with Wolf Kahn

Creator:
Kahn, Wolf, 1927-  Search this
Seckler, Dorothy Gees, 1910-1994  Search this
Subject:
Hans Hofmann School of Fine Arts (Provincetown, Mass.)  Search this
Type:
Sound Recording
Place:
New York, N.Y.
Provincetown, Mass.
Date:
1968 September 17
Record number:
(DSI-AAA)13828
See more items in:
Dorothy Gees Seckler collection of sound recordings relating to art and artists, 1962-1976
Data Source:
Archives of American Art
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:AAADCD_item_13828

An Untamed Sense of Control [sound recording]

Performer:
Holcomb, Roscoe  Search this
Cohen, John 1932-  Search this
Physical description:
1 sound disc : digital ; 4 3/4 in
Culture:
Americans  Search this
Anglo-American  Search this
Type:
Musical sound recordings
Place:
Kentucky
United States
New York
New York (N.Y.)
Cambridge (Mass.)
Massachusetts
Daisy (Ky.)
Date:
2003
Topic:
Folk music  Search this
Folk songs  Search this
Old-time music  Search this
Banjo  Search this
Guitar  Search this
Vocals  Search this
Harmonica  Search this
Violin  Search this
Hawaiian guitar  Search this
Local number:
SF-COMM-CD-40144
Smithsonian Folkways 40144
Restrictions & Rights:
Restrictions on access. SI Permission
Data Source:
Ralph Rinzler Folklife Archives and Collections
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_arc_354968

The World of Particulars [sound recording]

Performer:
Infantino, Jim  Search this
Physical description:
1 sound disc : digital ; 4 3/4 in
Culture:
Americans  Search this
Type:
Musical sound recordings
Place:
United States
Boston (Mass.)
Massachusetts
New York (N.Y.)
Date:
1996
Topic:
Singer-Songwriters  Search this
Popular music  Search this
Guitar  Search this
Local number:
Gadfly 209
Restrictions & Rights:
Restrictions on access. rrr
Data Source:
Ralph Rinzler Folklife Archives and Collections
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_arc_359642

Paper son : one man's story / Tung Pok Chin with Winifred C. Chin ; with an introduction by K. Scott Wong

Author:
Chin, Tung Pok d. 1988  Search this
Chin, Winifred C. 1952-  Search this
Subject:
Chin, Tung Pok d. 1988  Search this
Physical description:
xx, 147 p. : ill. ; 22 cm
Type:
Biography
Place:
United States
Boston (Mass.)
New York (N.Y.)
Date:
2000
20th century
Topic:
Chinese Americans  Search this
Immigrants  Search this
Illegal aliens  Search this
Chinese--Social conditions  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_714986

The race underground : Boston, New York, and the incredible rivalry that built America's first subway / Doug Most

Author:
Most, Doug  Search this
Subject:
Whitney, Henry Melville 1839-1923  Search this
Whitney, William C (William Collins) 1841-1904  Search this
Physical description:
viii, 404 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
Type:
Case studies
Place:
Massachusetts
Boston
New York (State)
New York
United States
Boston (Mass.)
New York (N.Y.)
Date:
2014
19th century
Topic:
Subways--History  Search this
Subways--Design and construction  Search this
Urban transportation  Search this
Competition  Search this
History  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_1039716

The King's best highway : the lost history of the Boston Post Road, the route that made America / Eric Jaffe

Author:
Jaffe, Eric  Search this
Physical description:
322 p. : ill., maps ; 24 cm
Type:
Books
Place:
Massachusetts
Boston Region
New York (State)
New York Region
United States
Boston Post Roads
Boston (Mass.)
New York
New York (N.Y.)
Boston
Date:
2010
Topic:
Post roads--History  Search this
Roads--History  Search this
Transportation--Social aspects--History  Search this
Transportation and state--History  Search this
Social change--History  Search this
History  Search this
Relations  Search this
Data Source:
Smithsonian Libraries
EDAN-URL:
edanmdm:siris_sil_988147

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