Alexander Robertson James papers

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.jamealex
Creators:
James, Alexander, 1890-1946
Dates:
1893-1983
bulk 1914-1946
Languages:
English
Physical Description:
3.6 Linear feet
(on 7 microfilm reels)
Repository:

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
Family and professional correspondence; exhibition and sales records; sketches; sketchbooks; photographs and printed materials documenting the career and activities of Alexander James.
Scope and Contents
A marriage certificate; a genealogy of the James family; autobiographical notes; passports for James and his wife Frederika Paine James; a diary with entries by both James (1907) and his mother (1921); loose pages from diaries kept by James and his wife (intermittent, 1917-1939). Correspondence to and from James family members, including eight letters from his father, William James; letters to and from colleagues, friends, museums, galleries, clients, and posthumous exhibition correspondence. Correspondents include Abbott Handerson Thayer, Rockwell Kent, and Eric Gugler.
Scope and Contents
There are also biographical notes on Abbott Handerson Thayer; a notebook containing James' description of his gesso techniques; Frederika James' notes on her husband's paintings and her account of a family trip to France; reminiscences of James by Barry Faulkner and Thornton Wilder; exhibition files containing correspondence, lists of works, address lists, guest books, clippings and catalogs (1937-1978); commission files; a card file with information on James' paintings, exhibitions and sales; sketches of landscapes and people including sketches of his father and John Singer Sargent.
Scope and Contents
Five sketchbooks (one too faint to film); an oil study of his father; three watercolors of Giverny, France; three pigment studies (unfilmed); 12 woodcuts by Julius J. Lankes; and a sketch of James by his brother, William James; expense journals; bank records; tax returns; insurance figures for paintings; a notebook of sales' records; price lists; invoices and receipts for materials; deeds; a will; certificates of name changes; photos of James, his studio and his work; photos and a photo album of William James and other family members; two albums of exhibition photos; photos of two sketches of James, one by John Singer Sargent, and the other by Barry Faulkner.

Arrangement
Arrangement
Reels 4195-4201: I. Biographical materials. II. Family correspondence. III. General correspondence. IV. Writings. V. Exhibition files. VI. Commission files. VII. Card file. VIII. Art works. IX. Financial materials. X. Legal materials. XI. Photographs. XII. Photograph albums. XIII. Printed materials. Chronologically arranged except for commission files which are arranged alphabetically by name of subject.

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
Portrait painter. The younger son of psychologist William James (1842-1910), brother of painter William James (1882-1961), and nephew of novelist Henry James, Alexander James was actually christened Francis Temple Tweedy James in 1890. In 1925 he had his name officially changed to Alexander Robertson James. Later in life he dropped the Robertson and became Alexander James. He studied with Abbott Handerson Thayer and was a close friend of John Singer Sargent and Rockwell Kent.

Administration
Existence and Location of Copies
35mm microfilm reels 3828 and 4195-4201 available at all Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan.
Reproduction Note
Letters from William James (1842-1910) to Alexander (reel 4195) are photocopies.
Existence and Location of Originals
Original letters from William James (1842-1910) to Alexander (reel 4195) retained by the donor, Michael James.
Existence and Location of Originals
Bound volume, reel 3828: Original in the Houghton Library, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Author
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Donated 1986 by Michael James, the son of Alexander James, except for the bound volume on reel 3828 which was lent for microfilming.

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Use
Reel 3828: Authorization to publish, quote, or reproduce must be obtained from Alexander R. James, Glandore, County Cork, Ireland.

Related Materials
Also found in the Archives on microfilm only (reel 3828) is a bound volume containing 37 letters from William James to his youngest son, Alexander James, one letter from his mother, Alice Howe Gibbens James, and 11 postcards.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Gesso Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sculptors -- United States -- Interviews Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sketchbooks Type Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Portrait painters Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Painters -- New Hampshire Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
James, Henry, 1843-1916 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
James, William, 1842-1910 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
James, William, 1882-1961 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Thayer, Abbott Handerson, 1849-1921 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sargent, John Singer, 1856-1925 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Wilder, Thornton, 1897-1975 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Faulkner, Barry, 1881-1966 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Gugler, Eric, 1889-1974 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Kent, Rockwell, 1882-1971 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Lankes, Julius J., 1884-1960 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
James, Frederika Paine Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid

Repository Contact
Archives of American Art
750 9th Street, NW
Victor Building, Suite 2200
Washington, D.C. 20001
https://www.aaa.si.edu/services/questions
https://www.aaa.si.edu/