Frances Wells Shaw papers

Inclusive Dates: 
1866–1976, (bulk 1925–1937)
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

4.4 linear feet (8 boxes, 1 oversize box) of material consisting of papers of Frances Wells Shaw of Chicago and Lake Forest, Illinois, wife of architect Howard Van Doren Shaw, much of it relating to the frequent domestic and international travels of Frances Shaw during the first half of the 20th century and including her diaries, travel materials and memorabilia, and photographs. The collection includes correspondence between Frances Shaw and her daughter Sylvia, plus some of Sylvia’s writings and family photographs.

Biographical Historical Note

Sylvia Shaw Judson Haskins, daughter of architect Howard Van Doren Shaw, and his wife Frances Wells Shaw, was a prominent sculptor who specialized in garden sculpture. Born in Chicago, she studied at the Art Institute. She traveled abroad and established a studio in New York before returning to Chicago in 1921. In 1942, Judson moved permanently to her family home of Ragdale, in Lake Forest, Illinois, and established a studio there.

Additional Notes

Related collections: Sylvia Shaw Judson Collection, Ryerson and Burnham Libraries, Art Institute of Chicago; Sylvia Shaw Judson Haskins papers, Shaw-Wells family papers, and Wells-Shaw family photograph collection, Chicago History Museum; and Clay Judson Papers, Newberry Library; Virginia Stewart collection on Sylvia Shaw Judson, Lake Forest College; Reference Files, Lake Forest-Lake Bluff Historical Society.