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George Biddle papers, circa 1910-1970

More Information

Stephanie Ashley
Scope and Contents
The papers of New York painter and muralist George Biddle (1885-1973), measure 0.76 linear feet and date from circa 1910-1970. The collection includes a certificate signed by President Harry Truman, transcripts of Biddle's diaries, a manuscript of a memoir about meeting President Franklin Roosevelt, three letters from William Hunt Diederich's daughter, transcripts of letters from Bernard Berenson, sketches and mural studies, and two glass plate negatives.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The papers on reels P12-P18 were loaned for microfilming in 1954 by the Philadelphia Museum of Art in Philadelphia, PA. George Biddle lent the material on reel D127 in 1963 and donated the rest of the collection to the Archives of American Art between 1966-1970. In 1972, Michael Biddle, George Biddle's son, gifted a photocopy of an inventory notebook that was discarded after microfilming.
Separated Materials
The Archives of American Art also holds microfilm of material lent for microfilming, including one of Biddle's original diaries, 1933-1935 (reel D127), records from the Federal Art Project, personal correspondence, articles and talks relating to Artists Equity (reels P17-P18), and a photocopy of Biddle's inventory notebook listing artwork and exhibitions (reel 4909). While the inventory notebook was discarded after microfilming, all other loaned materials were returned to the lender and are not described in the collection container inventory.
Related Materials
Originals of the edited diary transcripts in this collection are in the Library of Congress, Manuscript Division. The unedited diary has many more entries than the edited version and includes more details about Biddle's daily life and work, versions of articles by Biddle, and lists of his works of art through 1934.
Glass plate negatives in this collection were digitized in 2019 with funding provided by the Smithsonian Women's Committee.
Processing Information
George Biddle loaned typescripts of his diaries to the Archives of American Art between circa 1966 and 1970, in order for staff to type transcripts of the diaries. The collection was microfilmed on reels 3621 and 899 after the creation of the transcripts. The glass plate negatives were re-housed in 2015 with a grant from the Smithsonian Collections Care and Preservation Fund. The collection was processed and a finding aid prepared by Stephanie Ashley in 2018.