Archives Directory for the History of Collecting in America

Archives related to: Ivins, William Mills, 1881-1961

titleWilliam Mills Ivins papers, 1878-1964.
repositoryArchives of American Art
collection titleThe papers, 1878-1964 (20.6 linear feet) of museum curator, director, and art scholar William Mills Ivins (1881-1961) consist of personal and professional correspondence, writings, notes, photographs, and Ivins family papers. Ivins was Curator of Prints, 1916-1946, Assistant Director, 1933-1938, and Acting Director, 1938-1940 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The collection contains professional and personal correspondence with art historians, art dealers, museum curators, print and book collectors, and artists concerning the history of print making, book design and illustration, print collectors and collecting, exhibitions, and museum administration. Correspondence files appear to be complete, and correspondence is of substantive content. Also found are Ivins' published and unpublished writings and lectures, and notes. Of particular interest are the letters from Bernard Berenson, Paul J. Sachs, and Theodore Sizer, each of whom corresponded with Ivins freqently over extended periods about both personal and professional and matters.

Ivins' family papers include family correspondence, genealogies, and photographs. The papers of Ivin's wife, illustrator Florence Wyman Ivins (1881-1948), and the correspondence of several other relatives, can be found here augmented by family photographs.

Co-Creator:
Ames, Winslow
Arensberg, Walter, 1878-1954
Arms, John Taylor, 1887-1953
Berenson, Bernard, 1865-1959
Boas, George, 1891-
Burroughs, Bryson, 1869-1934
Carrington, Fitz Roy, 1869-1954
Cockerell, Sydney Carlyle, Sir, 1867-1962
Constable, W. G. (William George), 1887-
Dodgson, Campbell, 1867-1948
Frankfurter, Felix, 1882-1965
Friedländer, Max J., 1867-1958
Greene, Belle da Costa, 1883-1950
Holmes, Margaret Ivins, 1882-1954
Ivins, Barbara
Ivins, Emma Yard, 1857-1940
Ivins, Florence Wyman, 1881-1948
Ivins, Katherine
Ivins, William Mills, 1851-1915
Käsebier, Gertrude, 1852-1934 photographer.
Lay, Charles Downing, 1877-1956
Rogers, Bruce, 1870-1957
Ruzicka, Rudolph, 1883-
Sachs, Paul J. (Paul Joseph), 1878-1965
Sarton, George, 1884-1956
Simonson, Lee, 1888-
Sizer, Theodore, 1892-1967
Webster, Herman A. (Herman Armour), 1878-1970
Wind, Edgar, 1900-
Winter, Carl, 1906 Jan. 10-
Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, N.Y.)
Century Association (New York, N.Y.)
Grolier Club
Pierpont Morgan Library
extent20.6 linear feet
formatsCorrespondence Ephemera Notes Photographs Writings
accessUse of unmicrofilmed material in the holdings of the Archives of American Art requires an appointment and is limited to the Washington, D.C., facility.
record sourcehttp://www.siris.si.edu/
finding aidOnline and in repository.
acquisition informationThe William Mills Ivins, Jr., papers were donated to the Archives of American Art by his daughter, Barbara Ivins, in several installments between 1977 and 1983.
updated02/07/2020 18:19:57
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titleIvins family papers, 1885-1961, bulk (1900-1946) (MssCol 1535)
repositoryNew York Public Library, Manuscripts and Archives Division
collection titleCollection consists of correspondence, writings, notes, and legal and financial records of William Ivins, Sr.; correspondence, writings, notes, and diaries of William Ivins, Jr.; correspondence of other family members; family personal miscellany; photographs and graphic materials; and printed matter.

Correspondence, 1886-1915, of William Ivins, Sr. concerns his activities in New York and South America, and includes letters related to his unsuccessful 1905 mayoral campaign in New York City, his work for the Brazilian government from 1886 to 1893, and his business ventures abroad. His writings are on subjects such as the history of diplomacy, philosophy and theory of the law, and South American and New York politics. Papers of William Ivins, Jr. mainly contain his articles, lectures, notes, and diaries on the subjects of art, mathematics and museum administration. Other Ivins family correspondence, ca. 1910-1960, is comprised of letters of Emma Yard Ivins, wife of William Ivins, Sr., and Katherine Ivins, their daughter, and concerns the career of William Ivins, Jr. as well as political and suffrage issues. Also, songbooks and lyric sheets, photographs, art work by family members, and printed matter.

Biographical and Historical Notes
William Mills Ivins, Sr. (1851-1915) was a lawyer and municipal reformer in New York City. He held several city offices, served as counsel for Brazil in a boundary dispute with Argentina, was a founder of the Reform Club, and wrote about municipal problems and the history and theory of the law.

William Mills Ivins, Jr. (1881-1961) was the first curator of prints at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City from 1917 to 1946, associate director of the museum from 1933 to 1938, and acting director from 1938 to 1940. He was the author of many articles and books on prints, printmaking and the book arts.
extent13.1 linear feet (22 boxes)
formatsCorrespondence Writings Notes Legal Papers Financial Records
accessContact repository for restrictions and policies.
record linkhttp://www.nypl.org/sites/default/files/archivalcollections/pdf/ivinsfamily.pdf
record sourcehttp://catalog.nypl.org/record=b11868629~S1
finding aidCollection guide available in repository and on internet: http://catnyp.nypl.org/search?/.b3195158/.b3195158/1,1,1,B/l856~b3195158&FF=&1,0,,1,0
acquisition informationReceived from Barbara Ivins April 19, 1982
updated11/12/2014 11:29:56
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titleWilliam Mills Ivins letters to Theodore Sizer, 1926-1960.
repositoryYale University Library
collection title119 letters to Theodore Sizer (a few addressed also to Mrs. Sizer). Accompanied by a group of letters by Sizer, with obituaries, clippings, etc. about Ivins.

Biographical and Historical Notes:
William Mills Ivins, graduate of Harvard and Columbia Law School, Curator of Prints and Acting Director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, recipient of an honorary degree from Yale in 1946, author of How Prints Look, The Arts of the Book, and Prints and Visual Communication.

Theodore Sizer was curator at the Cleveland Museum of Art from 1922 to 1927, lecturer at Case Western Reserve College from 1924 to 1927, professor of art history at Yale University from 1927 until 1947, and director of the Yale University Art Gallery from 1929 to 1947.


Location: BEINECKE (Non-Circulating)
Call Number: GEN MSS 22
extent0.2 linear ft. (1 box)
formatsCorrespondence
accessContact repository for restrictions and policies.
record sourcehttp://orbis.library.yale.edu/
acquisition informationGift of Theodore Sizer, 1961.
updated11/12/2014 11:29:56
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titleCorrespondence with Edward Larocque Tinker, 1926.
repositoryUniversity of Pennsylvania
collection titleArchival/Manuscript Material

Contained in: Pennell Family Papers, ca. 1882-1951. Folder 251.

Notes: Comprises letters from William Mills Ivins, Olivia Paine, and Edward Robinson, plus loan agreements and lists of objects loaned by Tinker for the memorial exhibition of Joseph Pennell’s artwork.

Other Contributors: Ivins, William Mills, 1881-1961.
Paine, Olivia.
Robinson, Edward.

Location: Rare Book & Ms Library Manuscripts
Call Number: Ms. Coll. 50
extent9 items (10 leaves).
formatsCorrespondence
accessContact repository for restrictions and policies.
record sourcehttp://www.franklin.library.upenn.edu/
updated11/12/2014 11:29:56
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titleCorrespondence to Van Wyck Brooks, 1951-1961.
repositoryUniversity of Pennsylvania
collection titleDescription: Mixed Material

Contained in: Van Wyck Brooks Papers. Folders 1430-1433.

Location: Rare Book & Ms Library Manuscripts

Call Number: Ms. Coll. 650
extent43 items (43 leaves)
formatsCorrespondence
accessContact repository for restrictions and policies.
record sourcehttp://www.franklin.library.upenn.edu/
updated11/12/2014 11:29:56
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titleCorrespondence with Carl Zigrosser, 1913-1946.
repositoryUniversity of Pennsylvania
collection titleArchival/Manuscript Material

Contained in: Carl Zigrosser Papers, ca. 1891-1971. Folder 631.

Summary:
Over the years the Grolier Club displayed several print exhibitions. Carl Zigrosser helped William Ivins with a show of woodcuts in 1914, and spoke in connection with a show of prints by John Taylor Arms. Several letters from Edwin Bechtel and a draft of Zigrosser’s talk relate to the latter event.

LC Subject(s): Arms, John Taylor, 1887-1953.

Other Contributors:
Ivins, William Mills, 1881-1961.
Bechtel, Edwin DeTurck.
extent18 items (21 leaves).
formatsCorrespondence
accessIn general, the Carl Zigrosser Papers may be examined by qualified researchers in the reading room of the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, University of Pennsylvania. Photocopying of Zigrosser materials is at the discretion of the Rare Book and Manuscript Library. The receipt of photocopies does not grant publication rights without the written permission of the University of Pennsylvania and the literary executors of the authors in question.
record sourcehttp://www.franklin.library.upenn.edu/
finding aidAvailable in electronic form and in repository.
acquisition informationGift June 1972
updated11/12/2014 11:29:57
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titleCorrespondence with Carl Zigrosser, 1921-1961,n.d.
repositoryUniversity of Pennsylvania
collection titleArchival/Manuscript Material

Contained in: Carl Zigrosser Papers, ca. 1891-1971. Folder 774.

Summary:
William Ivins, Curator of Prints at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and Carl Zigrosser had a long and friendly relationship. Ivins could be sharp in his reactions, an odd mix of emotion and intellect that made him difficult to get along with. Zigrosser’s own sincere mildness and perceptiveness seems to have brought-out Ivins’ sweeter nature. Ivin’s reviewed Zigrosser’s writing for him, and Zigrosser helped Ivins with early exhibitions at the Grolier Club.

Their correspondence continues through their careers, with compliments on one another’s exhibitions and publications. Several letters touch on Ivins’ retirement, his depression and alienation from the print world, and lamentations about old age and his slipping abilities. Drafts of letters from Zigrosser record attempts to lure Ivins back to productive work.

Following Ivins’ death, there is a group of letters from Theodore Sizer, who was arranging to publish some of Ivins’ letters. There is also a group of letters from Barbara Ivins, William Ivins’ daughter. Included are several pages of copied-out entries from Zigrosser’s diaries, all the entries concern William Ivins. There are also some articles by Ivins in the file.

Other Contributors: Ivins, Barbara.
Sizer, Theodore, 1892-1967.
Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, N.Y.). Dept. of Prints.

Location: Rare Book & Ms Library Manuscripts
Call Number: Ms. Coll. 6
extent43 items (68 leaves and 1 pamphlet).
formatsCorrespondence Ephemera
accessIn general, the Carl Zigrosser Papers may be examined by qualified researchers in the reading room of the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, University of Pennsylvania. Photocopying of Zigrosser materials is at the discretion of the Rare Book and Manuscript Library. The receipt of photocopies does not grant publication rights without the written permission of the University of Pennsylvania and the literary executors of the authors in question.
record sourcehttp://www.franklin.library.upenn.edu/
finding aidAvailable in electronic form and in repository.
updated11/12/2014 11:30:03
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