Archives Directory for the History of Collecting in America

Archives related to: Ortgies & Co.

titleAmerican art auction catalog collection, 1785-1962.
repositoryArchives of American Art
collection titleAuction catalogs from the holdings of various libraries and auction houses in the United States, borrowed for microfilming for AAA's Auction Catalog Project, 1961-1965.

The majority of the catalogs are for auctions held in New York City and Philadelphia, although other locales are represented. Firms with significant numbers of catalogs include: American Art Association, Anderson Galleries, Associated Auctioneers, Bangs & Co., Barker, Benjamin S. Wise, Birch & Son, Bleecker & Van Dyke, C.F. Wetmore, C.G. Sloan & Co., Charles F. Libbie & Co., Chicago Book & Art Auctions, Clarke's Art Galleries, C.W. Brown, Daniel A. Mathews, Davis & Harvey, E. A. Haaseman Galleries, Elder Coin & Curio Company, Elliott, Blakeslee & Noyes, Field, Morris, Fenner & Co., Fifth Avenue Art Galleries, Galton-Orsburn Co., George A. Leavitt & Co., Haseltine Galleries, Henry A. Hartman, Leeds, Miner, Hiram H. Parke, Duveen, Leonard & Co., Hudson's, James P. Silo, J.C. Morgenthau & Co., Kende Galleries, Knickerbocker, Kreiser Gallery, Levy & Spooner, Lewis J. Bird & Co., Lihou Art Gallery, Merwin-Clayton Sales Company, Metropolitian Art Association, Miller & Morris, Monarch, Moore's, M. Thomas & Sons, National Art Galleries, Ortgies & Co., O. Rundle Gilbert, Parke-Bernet, Philadelphia Art Galleries, Plaza Art Auction Galleries, Rains Galleries, Ritter Galleries, Samuel T. Freeman & Co., Savoy, Schenck's Art Gallery, Scott & O'Shaughnessy, Stan V. Henkels, Swann Auction Galleries, Thomas Kirby, Walpole Galleries, William B. Norman, William D. Morley, and Young's Art Gallery; many others were also microfilmed.
extentca. 30,000 items (on 559 microfilm reels)
formatsMicrofilm Auction Catalogs
accessPatrons must use microfilm copy.
record sourcehttp://www.siris.si.edu/
finding aidA list of auction houses and related microfilm reel numbers is available at AAA offices. In addition, the Washington, D.C. reference desk's copy of Harold Lancour's "American Art Auction Catalogs: A Union List" (1944) has been annotated with reel and frame numbers.
acquisition informationLent for microfilming for AAA's Auction Catalog Project, 1961-1965. Among the institutions who participated are the American Antiquarian Society (29 reels), Art Institute of Chicago (2 reels), Boston Public Library (1 reel), Brooklyn Museum (16 reels), Cleveland Museum of Art (2 reels), Cooper Union (21 reels), Enoch Pratt Free Library (1 reel), Huntington Library (1 reel), Library Co. of Philadelphia (1 reel), Library of Congress (1 reel), Metropolitan Museum of Art (25 reels), Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, New York Historical Society (23 reels), New York Public Library (284 reels), New York State Library (1 reel), Parke-Bernet Galleries (128 reels), Pennsylvania Historical Society (2 reels), Philadelphia Museum of Art (10 reels), Walters Art Gallery (1 reel), and others.
updated05/12/2022 11:09:57
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titleM. Knoedler & Co. records, approximately 1848-1971
repositoryThe Getty Research Institute
collection titleThe records of M. Knoedler & Co. document the business of the prominent American art dealer from the mid-19th century to 1971, when the Knoedler Gallery was acquired by Armand Hammer. The archive traces the development of the once provincial American art market into one of the world's leading art centers and the formation of the private art collections that would ultimately establish many of the nation's leading art museums, such as the Frick Collection and the National Gallery of Art.

It brings to the foreground the business side of dealing as artworks shuttled back and forth among Knoedler, fellow dealers, and collectors, documenting developments in art connoisseurship, shifting tastes, the changing role of art in American society, and the essential role of private collectors in the formation of public American art collections.

The records provide insight into broader economic, social and cultural histories and the nation's evolving sense of place in the world. The Knoedler Gallery became one of the main suppliers of old master and post-Impressionist paintings in the United States. Financial records of the firm provide crucial provenance information on the large number of artworks in American museums that were sold by the gallery. The archive includes stock books, sales books and commission books; correspondence with collectors, artists, art dealers and other associates; photographs of the artworks sold by the gallery; records from the firm's offices in London, Paris and other cities; exhibition files; framing and restoration records, and records of the firm's Print Department.

Selected portions of the archive have been digitized and made available online. Connect to selected digitized portions of the archive.

Arranged in 14 series:
Series I. Stock books;
Series II. Sales books;
Series III. Commission books;
Series IV. Inventory cards;
Series V. Receiving and shipping records;
Series VI. Correspondence;
Series VII. Photographs;
Series VIII. Exhibition files;
Series IX. American Department records;
Series X. Framing and restoration records;
Series XI. Print Department records;
Series XII. Other financial records;
Series XIII. Library cards, scrapbooks, and research materials;
Series XIV. Knoedler family papers


Biographical/Historical Note:
M. Knoedler & Co. was a successor to the New York branch of Goupil & Co., an extremely dynamic print-publishing house founded in Paris in 1827. Goupil's branches in London, Berlin, Brussels, and The Hague, as well as New York, expanded the firm's market in the sale of reproductive prints.

The firm's office in New York was established in 1848. In 1857, Michael Knoedler, an employee of Goupil and a manager for the firm, bought out the interests in the firm's New York branch, conducted the business under his own name, and diversified its activities to include the sale of paintings. Roland Knoedler, Michael's son, took over the firm in 1878 and with Charles Carstairs opened galleries in Paris and London.

In 1928, the management of the firm passed to Roland's nephew Charles Henschel, Carman Messmore, Charles Carstairs and Carstairs' son Carroll. In 1956 Henschel died, and E. Coe Kerr and Roland Balaÿ, Michael Knoedler's grandson, took over. In 1971 the firm was sold to businessman and collector Armand Hammer. The gallery closed in November 2011.

extent3042.6 linear feet (5550 boxes, 17 flat file folders).
formatsAuction Catalogs Business Records Correspondence Financial Records Ephemera
accessOpen for use by qualified researchers, with the following exceptions. Boxes 77, 262-264, 1308-1512, 1969-1974, 3592-3723 are restricted due to fragility. Box 4468 is restricted until 2075.
record linkhttp://hdl.handle.net/10020/cifa2012m54
record sourcehttp://primo.getty.edu/GRI:GETTY_ALMA21129976460001551
contact informationContact gallery's archivist
finding aidAt the Getty Research Institute and over their website.
acquisition informationAcquired in 2012.
updated05/29/2018 14:44:15
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