Leonard W. Volk miscellaneous collection

Inclusive Dates: 
circa 1857–1892
Survey Repository: 

This record forms part of the Chicago’s Art-Related Archival Materials: A Terra Foundation Resource project funded by the Terra Foundation for American Art. For this project, the Archives surveyed archival repositories throughout the Chicago region to identify art-related materials contained in their holdings. While the Archives of American Art does not own any of the materials described herein, information about those materials and links to the original repositories have been included when available.

Descriptive Summary

0.5 linear feet of miscellaneous material by and about Chicago sculptor Volk, including a few original items plus photocopies and microfilm of other materials. Includes membership certificate for the Douglas Monument Association, 1862, signed by Volk as secretary; letter, 1890 May 19, to Chicago Historical Society requesting loan of one of two original busts in plaster (of J.S. Foster and J. Young Scammon); and letters (2) to S.H. Kerfoot, 1892 Nov., about first works of sculpture in Chicago. Also in the collection are photocopies of scrapbooks (3 vol.) containing newsclippings, correspondence, and catalogs related to the Volk's career; and microfilm and photocopies of selected pages of transcripts of Leonard W. Volk's memoir.

Biographical Historical Note

Leonard Wells Volk was a Chicago sculptor best known for his portrait busts of Stephen Douglas and Abraham Lincoln. Volk was the only sculptor to make a life mask of Lincoln, and several months later he made a cast of Lincoln’s hands. Volk was active in promoting art in Chicago.

Additional Notes

Related collection: George F. Rumsey Papers, Charles L. Hutchinson Papers, Chicago History Museum.