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Andrew Carnduff Ritchie papers, 1907-1983

Andrew Carnduff Ritchie papers, 1907-1983

Ritchie, Andrew Carnduff, 1907-1978

Art historian, Educator, Author, Arts administrator

Collection Information

Size: 10.3 linear feet

Summary: The papers of museum director, professor, writer, and post- World War II Monuments Men Andrew Carnduff Ritchie measure 10.3 linear feet and date from 1907 to 1983. Found within the papers are biographical material, including materials and photographs concerning his military service in the Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives Section of the U.S. Army; correspondence, including letters from numerous artists; writings; committee and organization files; exhibition and project files, teaching files; printed material; and photographs, including portrait images of Ritchie taken by Hans Namuth.

Biographical/Historical Note

Andrew Carnduff Ritchie (1907-1978) was a museum director, professor, and art historian based in New York and Connecticut.

Provenance

This collection was donated in multiple installments in 1979 and 1981 by Andrew Ritchie's widow, Jane T. Ritchie, and by her estate in 1986. Five letters from Alfred Hamilton Barr to Andrew and Jane Ritchie were donated in 1974 by Andrew Ritchie through Russell Lynes.

Related Materials

The Albright-Knox Gallery Archives in Buffalo, New York has a collection of Andrew Carnduff Ritchie papers, which include administrative records and correspondence.

A Finding Aid to the Andrew Carnduff Ritchie Papers, 1907-1983, in the Archives of American Art
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Author
Finding aid prepared by Rihoko Ueno
Biographical/Historical note
Andrew Carnduff Ritchie (1907-1978) was a museum director, professor, and art historian based in New York and Connecticut. He served as director of the Albright Knox Gallery in Buffalo, N.Y., director of Painting and Sculpture at the Museum of Modern Art, and director of the Yale University Art Gallery.
Andrew Carnduff Ritchie was born in Bellshill, Scotland, in 1907 to Andrew and Jeanie Gilchrist Ritchie. The family immigrated to the United States when he was 15 and settled in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He attended the University of Pittsburgh and received a bachelor's and master of arts degrees in medieval art, and his doctoral degree from the University of London in 1935. That same year, he married Jane Thompson.
From 1935 to 1942, Ritchie was a researcher and lecturer at the Frick Collection in New York City and faculty member at New York University, as well as a visiting lecturer at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland.
In 1942, Ritchie was appointed director of the Albright Knox Gallery in Buffalo, New York where he stayed until 1949 when he became the director of Painting and Sculpture at the Museum of Modern Art.
In 1945-1946, directly following World War II, Ritchie served with the U.S. Army's Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives section in Austria and helped with the restitution of art looted by the Nazis, returning paintings and cultural artifacts back to their country of origin. He was later honored by France and the Netherlands for this work.
In 1957, Ritchie accepted the postion of director of the Yale University Art Gallery where he stayed until 1971. While there, he acquired notable works of art for the Gallery's collections by David Smith, Noguchi, and Maillol. Thanks to Ritchie's efforts and guidance, art collector and patron Paul Mellon donated his collection of British art and established the Yale Center for British Studies. In 1971, Ritchie also became the Clark Professor at Williams College, Massachusetts, and, in 1972, he was a visiting professor at the University of Sydney, Australia. Ritchie retired from Yale in 1973.
Ritchie was also awarded honorary doctorates from the University of Pittsburgh and the Royal College of Art in London. He wrote several books over the course of his career and passed away in Canaan, Connecticut, in 1978.
Arrangement note
This collection is arranged as 8 series.
Series 1: Biographical Material, 1907-1978 (0.5 linear feet; Box 1, OV 11)
Series 2: Correspondence, 1928-1983 (2.2 linear feet; Boxes 1-3)
Series 3: Writings, 1927-1978 (2.9 linear feet; Boxes 3-6, OV 11)
Series 4: Committee and Organization Files, 1948-1971 (1.2 linear feet; Boxes 6-7)
Series 5: Exhibition and Project Files, 1949-1978 (1.6 linear feet; Boxes 7-9, OV 12)
Series 6: Teaching Files, 1957-1974 (0.5 linear feet; Box 9)
Series 7: Printed Material, 1928-1978 (0.5 linear feet; Boxes 9-10)
Series 8: Photographs, 1935-1982 (O.9 linear feet; Box 10, OV 13)
Scope and Contents note
The papers of museum director, professor, writer, and post-World War II Monuments Men Andrew Carnduff Ritchie measure 10.3 linear feet and date from 1907 to 1983. Found within the papers are biographical material, including materials and photographs concerning his military service in the Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives Section of the U.S. Army; correspondence, including letters from numerous artists; writings; committee and organization files; exhibition and project files, teaching files; printed material; and photographs, including portrait images of Ritchie taken by Hans Namuth.
Biographical materials include birth certificates, passports, academic records, biographical profiles, and awards. There are files documenting Andrew Carnduff Ritchie's post-World War II military service in 1945-1946 as a "Monuments Men" in the Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives (MFAA) section of the U.S. Army, including correspondence, forms, reports, photographs (including 7 of paintings looted from Holland), and awards. There is also a file on the Fogg conference on the emergency protection of artwork dated 1939-1942 and one file regarding the Frick Collection's orders for protecting art. There is also a folder of material on his wife Jane Ritchie.
Alphabetical and chronological correspondence is with artists, museums, galleries, universities, and colleagues. The bulk of the alphabetical correspondence consists of letters from artists such as Afro, Alexander Calder, Dimitri Hadzi, Russell Lynes, Eduardo Paolozzi, Theodore Roszak, and others. There are also condolence letters addressed to Jane Ritchie. Chronological correspondence includes Ritchie's correspondence on the subject of travels, lectures, projects, and exhibitions.
Writings include one disbound notebook, papers from college and graduate studies, lecture drafts, outlines, and notes. There are a few writings by others.
Committee and organization files document Ritchie's work on advisory panels, trustee boards, councils, board of directors, and committees. There are meeting minutes, bulletins, reports, studies, and correspondence. Some of the more voluminous files include the College Art Association's study on "The Visual Arts in Higher Education" as well as the Museum of Modern Art's committee on museum collections.
Exhibition and project files include correspondence, printed material, photographs, catalogs, and assorted documents. Among the projects and exhibitions in this series are Ritchie's work on the Alfred E. Burr Memorial in Connecticut and the Middelheim Sculpture exhibition.
Teaching files contain correspondence, program outlines, course materials, recommendations, and a few student papers from universities and programs where Ritchie taught, including Yale University Art Gallery.
Printed material consists of news clippings, some of which are arranged by subject, along with articles by Andrew Ritchie, press releases, magazines, bulletins, and a few exhibition catalogs.
Photographs are of Andrew Ritchie, and of friends and artists at various art openings and events. There is one small album of photographs of a birthday party for Jane Ritchie. Also included are photographs of artwork.
Provenance
This collection was donated in multiple installments in 1979 and 1981 by Andrew Ritchie's widow, Jane T. Ritchie, and by her estate in 1986. Five letters from Alfred Hamilton Barr to Andrew and Jane Ritchie were donated in 1974 by Andrew Ritchie through Russell Lynes.
Related Archival Materials note
Among the holding at the Archives of American Art is an interview of Andrew Carnduff Ritchie conducted in 1977 June 16-17 by Paul Cummings.
The Albright-Knox Gallery Archives in Buffalo, New York has a collection of Andrew Carnduff Ritchie papers, which include administrative records and correspondence.
Processing Information note
The collection was processed to a minimal level and a finding aid was written by Rihoko Ueno in 2015. At that time, a separately cataloged collection of letters from Alfred Barr were integrated with the papers. The collection was processed to a minimal level that included arrangement to the series and folder levels. Generally, items within folders were simply verified with folder titles, but not arranged further and not all staples and clips were removed. The collection was rehoused in archival containers and folders.

Additional Forms Available

Five letters from Alfred H. Barr to Ritchie are available on 35 mm microfilm reel 2786, frames 1109-1123 at the Archives of American Art offices, and through interlibrary loan.

Restrictions on Access

Use of original papers requires an appointment.

How to Cite This Collection

Andrew Carnduff Ritchie papers, 1907-1983. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

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