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Una Hanbury papers, 1910-1994, bulk 1966-1990

Una Hanbury papers, 1910-1994, bulk 1966-1990

Hanbury, Una, 1904-1990


Collection Information

Size: 5.3 linear ft.

Summary: Personal and business records, project files, estate papers, photographs, video recordings, and printed material relating to Hanbury's career as a portrait sculptor.

Personal papers, 1926-1970, consist of correspondence with family and friends, memorabilia, public speaking files, pencil drawings by Hanbury and a silkscreen by her grandson, Colin Poole. Business records, 1965-1991, include correspondence with galleries, museums, and foundries, also ledgers, and price lists. Project files, 1963-1989, (arranged alphabetically by title/commission) contain photographs of sitters, letters, casting records, and related printed matter. Estate records, 1990-1994, include correspondence, inventories, appraisals, price lists, and a contract with Saunders Sculpture International. Printed matter, 1926-1990, consists of Hanbury's published writings, exhibition catalogs, announcements, invitations, articles about Hanbury and her work, obituary and memorial service brochure. Photographs, ca. 1910-1985, are of Hanbury as a child and young girl, and include a view of a sculpture class at the Royal Academy, 1925, as well as later photographs of Hanbury, 1964-1985, at special events, with horses, and in her studio, and photographs of her work.

ADDITION: Files on galleries, including the Munson Gallery and the Robertson Gallery; files on portrait sitters Richard Neutra, S. Dillon Ripley, Robert Oppenheimer, Georgia O'Keeffe, and others, containing letters, printed material, and photographs; photographs of Hanbury and her works of art; a videotape of a demonstration by the artist; appraisal information, and inventory and price lists; exhibition announcements; newspaper clippings; and miscellany.

Biographical/Historical Note

Una Hanbury (1904-1990) was a sculptor in Washington, D.C. and Santa Fe, N.M. [Birthdate also cited as 1909, although daughter confirmed 1904 birthdate.] Studied at both London's Polytechnic School of Art and the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in London. She is best known for bronze portrait busts of distinguished individuals such as Rachel Carson, Buckminster Fuller, Georgia O'Keeffe, among others others.


Donated 1999 and 2006 by Jillian Poole, Hanbury's daughter.

A Finding Aid to the Una Hanbury Papers, 1910-1994, bulk 1966-1990, in the Archives of American Art
Finding aid prepared by Catherine S. Gaines and Kimberley Henze
Scope and Contents note
The papers of Una Hanbury measure 5.3 linear feet and date from 1910 to 1994, with the bulk of the material from 1966 to 1990. The collection documents the sculptor's career and the dispersal of her estate through business records, project files, subject files, printed material, and photographs. There is also a small amount of material relating to her personal life including correspondence with friends and family and photographs from various stages of her life.
Biographical/Historical note
Una Hanbury (1904-1990) was a sculptor in Washington, D.C. and Santa Fe, New Mexico. Hanbury was born in Middlesex, England, in 1904; the incorrect birth date of 1909 that she submitted to Who's Who and other biographical reference sources is cited in numerous published articles. Hanbury [née Rawnsley] exhibited artistic talent as a young child and received instruction from animal artist Frank Calderon. After graduation from London's Polytechnic School of Art, she studied for three years at the Royal Academy. Jacob Epstein was her most influential teacher.
Soon after completing her formal education, Una Rawnsley became Una Hanbury and devoted herself full-time to being a wife and mother. During World War II she left England for Bermuda and brought her family to the United States once the war was over. Hanbury settled in Washington, D.C., where she resumed her sculpting career, completing many large scale commissions for public buildings such as the Medical Examiners Building, Baltimore, and St. Mark's Lutheran Church, Springfield, Virginia, among others. She developed a fine reputation as a portrait sculptor, and commissions included busts of Rachel Carson, Enrico Fermi, Buckminster Fuller, Laura Gilpin, Richard Neutra, Georgia O'Keeffe, Robert Oppenheimer, S. Dillon Ripley, and Andrés Segovia. In addition, animals--particularly horses--were a favorite subject since childhood; sculptures were commissioned by several zoos, and horse portraits often were commissioned by owners.
In 1970, Una Hanbury relocated to Santa Fe, New Mexico, where she continued working well into old age and became a significant force in the art life of that region.
Arrangement note
The collection is arranged into seven series.
Series 1: Personal Papers, 1926-1983 (Box 1; 4 folders)
Series 2: Business Records, 1965-1991 (Boxes 1-2; 1.2 linear feet)
Series 3: Project Files, 1961-1992 (Boxes 2-3; 1.8 linear feet)
Series 4: Subject Files, circa 1924-1985 (Box 4, OV 7; 1.0 linear feet)
Series 5: Estate of Una Hanbury, 1990-1994 (Boxes 4-5; 0.6 linear feet)
Series 6: Printed Material, 1926-1990 (Box 5; 0.4 linear feet)
Series 7: Photographs, 1910-1991 (Boxes 5-6, 0.3 linear feet)
Donated 1999 and 2006 by Jillian Poole, Hanbury's daughter.
Processing Information note
The collection was processed and the finding aid written by Catherine S. Gaines. The finding aid was modified by Stephanie Ashley in October 2001 prior to EAD conversion. All duplicates were returned to the donor at her request. The second accession was processed to a minimal level, merged into the collection, and the finding aid updated by Kimberley Henze in 2015.

Restrictions on Access

Use of original papers requires an appointment and is limited to the Archives' Washington, D.C. Research Center. Contact Reference Services for more information.

How to Cite This Collection

Una Hanbury papers, 1910-1994, bulk 1966-1990. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

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