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Allen Townsend Terrell papers, 1908-1982

Allen Townsend Terrell papers, 1908-1982

Terrell, Allen Townsend, 1897-1986


Collection Information

Size: 4.5 linear ft.

Summary: The papers of New York, Rome, and Paris painter Allen Townsend Terrell painter measure 4.5 linear feet and date from 1908-1982. Included are biographical materials; detailed letters from Terrell to his parents; fourteen diaries describing European travels; scattered financial records; three sketchbooks and miscellaneous sketches; printed material; and photographs of Terrell, his colleagues, his home and studios, artwork, and exhibition installations.

Biographical material includes a passport, membership cards for miscellaneous organizations, brief biographical accounts, and a guestbook containing signatures from several exhibition openings. There are almost daily letters written by Terrell to his parents describing his travels and education in the arts while in Europe. Scattered letters are from friends and colleagues, including one from Albert Laessle.

Fourteen diaries describe daily events in Terell's European travels. Scattered financial material includes banking records and miscellaneous receipts.

Three sketchbooks contain several block prints and miscellaneous sketches by Terrell. Printed material includes clippings, exhibition announcements and catalogs for Terrell and for others, as well as programs, and miscellaneous brochures. Photographs are of Terrell, and of his colleagues, studio, and artwork, in addition to albums containing photographs of his apartment, the Riverhead studio, commissioned projects, and exhibition installations.

Biographical/Historical Note

Allen Townsend Terrell (1897-1986) was a painter and sculptor from New York, N.Y.


Donated 1976-1981 by Allen Townsend Terrell.

A Finding Aid to the Allen Townsend Terrell Papers,
, in the Archives of American Art
Biographical Note
Allen Townsend Terrell (1897-1986) was a painter and sculptor who worked in Paris, Rome, and New York. Terrell was born in Riverhead, New York and graduated from the Columbia University School of Architecture in 1921. He also studied painting and sculpture at the Art Students League with Edward McCartan and at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts with Albert Laessle. In 1924, he studied in France at the Conservatoire Américain de Fontainebleau with sculptor Charles Despiau, and at the Académie Julian in Paris.
Between 1924 and 1926, Terrell established a studio in Paris, later moving to Rome between 1928 and 1931. From 1934 to 1935, he taught watercolor and still life painting at the Parsons School of Design.
Among other exhibitions in Paris, New York, and Philadelphia, Terrell had a solo exhibition at the National Arts Club in 1975. He was a member of the American Watercolor Society and president of the Alumni of the American School at Fontainebleau.
Allen Townsend Terrell died on July 8, 1986.
The collection is organized as 7 series; each series is arranged chronologically.
Series 1: Biographical Material, 1924-1978 (Boxes 1, 6; 3 folders)
Series 2: Letters, 1908-1978 (Boxes 1-3; 2.8 linear feet)
Series 3: Diaries, 1965-1978 (Boxes 3-4; 12 folders)
Series 4: Financial Material, 1925-1933 (Box 4; 7 folders)
Series 5: Artwork, 1925-1982 (Boxes 4, 6; 7 folders)
Series 6: Printed Material, 1911-1976 (Box 4; 15 folders)
Series 7: Photographs, 1925-1972 (Box 5; 15 folders)
Donated 1976-1981 by Allen Townsend Terrell.
Processing Information
The papers were processed in September 2007 by Jean Fitzgerald.

Restrictions on Access

Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.

How to Cite This Collection

Allen Townsend Terrell papers, 1908-1982. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

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