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Olin Levi Warner papers, 1857-1962

Olin Levi Warner papers, 1857-1962

Warner, Olin Levi, 1844-1896


Collection Information

Size: 1.9 linear feet

Biographical/Historical Note

Olin Levi Warner (1844-1896) was a sculptor active in New York, N.Y., London, and Paris.


Donated by Rosalie Warner Jones and daughter Frances Follin Jones, 1972 through 1977. Portions of the materials that were originally lent by Rosalie Warner Jones were donated in subsequent gifts with the exception of the Olin Warner sketchbook (reel 270, frames 933-975) which remains in the possession of the Warner family. Materials previously microfilmed on reels 414 and 3746-3747 were merged and reprocessed, with a finding aid, in 2005, along with additional material transferred from the Smithsonian American Art Museum in 2005.

Scope and Contents

The collection documents Warner's art student days in Paris and his career as a sculptor, primarily in New York City. Found are scattered biographical materials and writings, including a speech by Warner about the Paris Commune of 1871; personal and professional correspondence; clippings, catalogs, and other printed material; sculpture project files; and photographs of Warner, his studio, his family, notable figures who sat for him, including artist J. Alden Weir, and his artwork.

Personal and business correspondence written by Warner, his wife, and his daughter is with family and friends. Warner's correspondents include artists Albert Pinkham Ryder, Clarence Cook, and Wyatt Eaton, among others. Of note are letters written from Warner to his family during the time he spent in Paris from 1869 to 1872 studying art and serving in the Foreign Legion.

Printed materials include clippings and exhibition catalogs for the Society of American Artists, National Sculpture Society, and the World's Columbian Exposition. Also found are scattered project files for a few of his notable sculptural projects, including his statue of Massachusetts governor Charles Devens, the Hodgkins Medal designed as the Smithsonian Institution's seal, work for the Chicago World's Fair, and bronze work produced by the Jno. Williams Foundry. Photographs in the papers are of Warner, his family, home, and studio, works of art, and a few notable sitters, including the artist J. Alden Weir.

Also in the Archives is a sketchbook that was lent for microfilming (reel 270).

Portions: microfilm reels 414, 3746-3747, and 270 available at Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan. Researchers should note that the arrangement of the collection as described in the finding aid does not reflect the order of the collection on microfilm.

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.

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