Research material on William and Thomas Birch, circa 1799-1990;, bulk 1940-1970

Birch family

Collection size: 1.4 linear feet

Collection Summary: Biographical material, writings, scrapbooks, correspondence, photographs, artwork, printed material and miscellany relating to William and Thomas Birch.

Biographical material includes research material on the Birch coat of arms; notes, including two scrapbooks, concerning the Birch family genealogy compiled by David Walter Harry and Thaddeus Harry, ancestors of William and Thomas Birch. Writings include thesis notes by Doris Jean Creer on William and Thomas Birch. Photographs are of Birch family members and works of art by William and Thomas Birch.

Artwork includes lithographs of oil paintngs by William and Thomas Birch, including Girard's Bank (1800), Second Street (1799), and If that Fellow Wants to Fight, We Won't Disappoint Him (1812); one black and white engraving and one aquatint of Bethlehem, Pa (circa 1820) by artist William Strickland based on an oil painting by Thomas Birch, and two black and white engravings and one aquatint of View of the Water Gap and Columbia Glass Works, River Delaware (circa 1820) by William Strickland based on an oil painting by Thomas Birch.

Printed material include exhibition catalogs and books, newspaper clippings and magazine articles. Also included is documentation of a donation of William Birch's paint box to the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.

Biographical/Historical Note: Enamel painters, miniaturists, engravers, etchers, publishers; Philadelphia, Pa. William Russell Birch (1755-1834) is best known for his miniature and enamel portraits and this series of Views of Philadelphia which he worked on with his son Thomas Birch (1779-1851) and published in 1799-1800.

Donated in 2008 by Cindy Keene, daughter of David Walter Harry.

How to Use this Collection

  • Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.
  • For more information on using the Archives’ resources, see the FAQ or Ask Us.

Make a Request

Reading Room Reproduction