A Finding Aid to the Thomas Craven Papers,
1919-1949, 1975
, in the Archives of American Art
AAA.cravthom

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.cravthom
Creators:
Craven, Thomas, b. 1889
Dates:
1919-1949, 1975
Languages:
English
Physical Description:
0.07 linear feet
Repository:
Archives of American Art
The papers of art critic Thomas Craven measure approximately .07 linear feet and date from 1919 through 1949 and 1975. The collection consists primarily of a dismantled scrapbook (1925 1949; 1975) containing newspaper clippings of Craven's articles and writings which span his career. Also found within the scrapbook are reviews by Oscar Bluemner and Byron Browne of Craven's two anti-modernist books, Men of Art and Modern Art. The collection also contains four letters concerning publications, a typescript essay about Thomas Craven's early career, two files of scattered writings in manuscript form, two bound handwritten manuscript versions of A Treasury of Art Masterpieces (1939), and Greek Art (1950), and miscellaneous loose newsclippings.

Scope and Content Note
Scope and Content Note
The papers of art critic Thomas Craven measure approximately .07 linear feet and date from 1919 through 1949 and 1975. The collection consists primarily of a dismantled scrapbook (1925 1949; 1975) containing newspaper clippings of Craven's articles and writings which span his career. Also found within the scrapbook are reviews by Oscar Bluemner and Byron Browne of Craven's two anti-modernist books, Men of Art and Modern Art. The collection also contains four letters concerning publications, a typescript essay about Thomas Craven's early career, two files of scattered writings in manuscript form, two bound handwritten manuscript versions of A Treasury of Art Masterpieces (1939), and Greek Art (1950), and miscellaneous loose newsclippings.

Arrangement
Arrangement
The collection is arranged into six series:
Series 1: Biographical Material, undated (Box 1; 1 folder)
Series 2: Letters, 1919-1956, undated (Box 1; 1 folder)
Series 3: Writings, 1920-1949 (Box 1; 2 folders)
Series 4: Manuscripts, 1939, 1950 (Box 1; 2 folders)
Series 5: Loose Newsclippings, 1941 (Box 1; 1 folder)
Series 6: Scrapbook, 1925-1941, 1975 (Box 2; 5 folders)

Biographical Note
Biographical Note
Author, art critic, and lecturer Thomas Craven (b.1888) was dubbed the "the principal ideologue of the American Scene" movement by the art historian Matthew Baigell. Craven wrote numerous articles, essays, criticisms, and reviews for Scribners, Harpers, The Dial, The Nation, The New Republic and The Forum. He was art critic for the New York American, the Hearst Paper. After graduating from Kansas Wesleyan University in 1908, Craven lived in Paris for a time. Upon his return to the United States, he settled in Greenwich Village where he began his reaffirmation of American art and culture. He roomed with American painter Thomas Hart Benton and was friends with John Steuart Curry, George Grosz, Reginald Marsh and Grant Wood. Craven's first book, Men of Art, was published in 1931. The book was an art historical survey of painting in the Western world and described as a combination of social history, biography and description and criticism. Craven also wrote Modern Art, A Treasury of Art Masterpieces, and Greek Art. Craven was noted for his often caustic reviews and criticisms of the modernistic movement. He died in 1969 at the age of 81.

Administration
Alternative Forms Available
The microfilm portion of the collection is available on microfilm reel 5670. The microfilm is available for interlibrary loan.
Processing Information
The collection was processed by Rosa Fernandez in June, 2000. The scrapbook was microfilmed in 2000.
Author
Finding aid prepared by Rosa M. Fernandez
Provenance
The collection was donated in 1999 by Richard Craven, Thomas Craven's son.

Using the Collection
Restrictions on Access
The collection is open for research. Use requires an appointment and is limited to the Washington, D.C. research facility. Patrons must use microfilm copy for portions on microfilm.
Ownership and Literary Rights
The Thomas Craven papers are owned by the Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution. Literary rights as possessed by the donor have been dedicated to public use for research, study, and scholarship. The collection is subject to all copyright laws.
Preferred Citation
Thomas Craven papers, 1919-1949, 1975. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.

Accruals
Accruals
Additional donations of Thomas Craven papers are expected.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Art criticism Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Art critics--New York (State)--New York Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Art, Modern Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Manuscripts Genre/Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Scrapbooks Genre/Form Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Archives of American Art
750 9th Street, NW
Victor Building, Suite 2200
Washington, D.C., 20001
Phone: 202-633-7950
http://www.aaa.si.edu/askus