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Alma Thomas papers, 1894-2000, bulk 1936-1982

Alma Thomas papers, 1894-2000, bulk 1936-1982

Thomas, Alma, 1891-1978

Art teacher, Painter

Collection Information

Size: 6.6 linear feet

Summary: The papers of African-American painter and art instructor Alma Thomas date from 1894-2000 (bulk 1936-1982). They provide documentation of Thomas' artwork, exhibitions, teaching career at Shaw Junior High School in Washington, D.C., and her relationships with friends and colleagues.

Biographical/Historical Note

Alma Thomas (1891- 1978) was a painter and teacher in Washington, D.C.


The Alma Thomas papers were donated in several accretions between 1979 and 2004 by J. Maurice Thomas, the artist's sister, and in 2010 by Charles Thomas Lewis, Thomas' nephew.

Related Materials

In 1979, J. Maurice Thomas loaned papers for microfilming. Most, but not all, of the loaned material was later donated and is described in this finding aid. Loaned materials not donated at a later date are available on reels 1541-1543 and are not described in the container listing of this finding aid.

Additional Forms Available

Portions of this collection and the separated materials lent for microfilming are available on 35 mm microfilm reels 1541-1543 at Archives of American Art offices, and through interlibrary loan. Researchers should note that the arrangement of the collection as described in this finding aid does not reflect the order of the collection on microfilm.

Restrictions on Access

Use requires an appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate access copy requires advance notice.

How to Cite This Collection

Alma Thomas papers, 1894-2000, bulk 1936-1982. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.