Skip to main content

Henry Kirke Brown papers, 1836-1893

Henry Kirke Brown papers, 1836-1893

Brown, Henry Kirke, 1814-1886

Sculptor, Painter


Collection Information

Size: 1.0 linear ft. (on 2 microfilm reels)

Summary: Primarily correspondence with Brown's wife, Lydia Louise Udall, his nephew, Henry Kirke Bush-Brown, and other family members. Also included are letters from artists George Catlin, George Fuller, Sanford R. Gifford, James Reid Lambdin, Louis Lang, Erastus Dow Palmer, Hiram Powers, Horatio Stone, and others; five news clippings; and miscellaneous notes. Brown's lengthy letters to his wife reveal his devotion to her and the conflict he felt between his art and his personal life. He discusses his work, including progress on his statue of George Washington, located in Union Square, New York City. Letters to his family from Rome and Florence allude to his awe of Italy's monuments. Also included are letters from Washington, D.C. during Brown's tenure as a member of the U.S. Art Commission in the 1860s.

Biographical/Historical Note

Sculptor and portrait painter; born in Leyden, Mass.; died in Newburgh, N.Y.


Donated 1981 by Dorothy Young, who acquired the papers from her husband, an art dealer.

How to Use This Collection

Alternative Forms Available

Microfilm reel 2770 and 2771 available at Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan.

Restrictions on Access

Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C., Research Center. Microfilmed materials must be consulted on microfilm. Contact Reference Services for more information.

How to Cite This Collection

Henry Kirke Brown papers, 1836-1893. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.