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Wilbur H. Burnham Studios records, circa 1901-1991

Wilbur H. Burnham Studios

Collection Information

Size: 40.3 Linear feet

Summary: The records of nationally renowned Boston, Massachussetts, stained glass design company, Wilbur H. Burnham Studios, measure 40.3 linear feet and date from circa 1901-1991. The majority of the collection consists of project files for the studio's stained glass window contracts throughout the United States from the 1920s-1980s. In addition to project files, records include biographical material for the owners, correspondence relating to personal and studio business, general business and financial records, writings such as published articles by Wilbur H. Burnham, scrapbooks and other printed material documenting the history of the company, artwork including extensive watercolor design studies for stained glass, and photographic material. There is a 3.4 linear foot unprocessed addition to this collection donated in 2021 that includes sketches, awards, printed material, passports, biographical material, Christmas cards, photographs and negatives of Burnham and works of art, slides and postcards of stained glass windows, posthumous material, a bound ledger, legal papers, invoices and receipts, project files and glass plate negatives. Materials date from circa 1901-1991.

Biographical/Historical Note

Boston, Massachussets stained glass design firm, Wilbur H. Burnham Studios, was founded by master stained glass craftsman Wilbur H. Burnham, in 1922. Together with Charles J. Connick and Joseph G. Reynolds, Burnham studios became recognized as one of the most prominent stained glass design companies in the United States. Burnham took early commissions from influential American architect Ralph Adams Cram, and believed strongly in the medieval stained glass tradition. In the late 1930s his son, Wilbur H. Burnham, Jr., who had received an informal education on tours of Europe with his family, and a BFA from Yale University, joined the firm.

Provenance

The Wilbur H. Burnham Studios records were donated in 8 accessions by Wilbur H. Burnham, Jr., from 1977-1981 and by Wilbur C. Burnham, grandson of the founder, in 1990-1991 and 2021. Scott McDaniel, co-owner of the firm, contributed to the 1990 donation.

Language Note

English .

Funding

Funding for the processing of this collection was provided by the Terra Foundation for American Art