Selected Peale family papers

Summary
Collection ID:
AAA.pealpeal
Creators:
Peale family
Dates:
1803-1854
Languages:
English
.
Physical Description:
3 Microfilm reels
3 partial microfilm reels
Repository:

Scope and Contents
Scope and Contents
The microfilmed selected Peale family papers contain papers of Charles Willson Peale, Rembrandt Peale, and Titian Ramsay Peale, mainly related to Peale's Museum. Also included are one item pertaining to Franklin Peale, and one to Rubens Peale.
Microfilmed on Reel P21 are manuscript of memoranda of the Philadelphia Museum, giving records and accessions for 1803-1842; financial statements (1808-1819) listing current expenditures; a manuscript of A Walk Through the Philadelphia Museum by Charles Willson Peale (after 1802); minutes of the Museum (1841-1845); manager's reports to the Board of Trustees (1833-1835), signed by Titian R. Peale (10 reports); Titian Peale's correspondence with George Ord (1827-1854), and his drawing book (circa 1820); extracts of letters written by Charles Willson Peale from Belfield and Philadelphia (1821-1823); extracts of letters written by Rembrandt Peale to Reuben Haines and Coleman Sellers (1828 September 24 and 1829 November 30), and to his wife (1830). Also included (frames 164-182) is a "Catalog of the National Portrait and Historical Gallery, illustrative of American history, comprising 269 original portraits and historical paintings, formerly belonging to Peale's Museum, to be sold without reserve, on Friday 6th October 1854... M. Thomas & Sons, Auctioneers."
Microfilmed on Reels P23 and P29 are miscellaneous Peale related documents from the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Society Collection. Included are a report of the Committee of Councils on the use of Charles Willson Peale's windmill (1815 January 5); C. W. Peale's appeal to aid for a soldier; Rubens Peale memorial of the Trustees of the Philadelphia Museum (1831 October 25); and a register made by Franklin Peale of the medal dies of the U. S. Mint, with notes (1841) (reel P29, frames 5-31).

Biographical / Historical
Biographical / Historical
The Peale family was a family of painters, primarily in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Charles Willson Peale (1741-1827) was a portrait painter and engraver and studied in London with Benjamin West. He is known for his portraits of the founding fathers including George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, and John Adams. In 1786 he founded the Peale Museum, and was one of the founding members of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts in 1805.
Rembrandt Peale (1778-1860) was born in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, and was the second son of Charles Willson Peale. He was known primarily for his historical paintings and portraits, particularly those of George Washington. Peale painted his first Washington portrait in 1795 at the age of 17, in a sitting arranged by his father. With his father, he was also a founding member of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. He also established Peale's Baltimore Museum and Gallery of Fine Arts in 1814.
Titian Ramsay Peale (1799-1885) was a naturalist, photographer, and scientific illustrator. Named for an older brother who died in 1798, he was the only naturalist in the family and documented animals and scenery in watercolors on scientific expeditions including the 1819 Long expedition to the Rocky Mountains.
Benjamin Franklin Peale (1795-1870), called Franklin, was his father's assistant at the museum and managed it after Charles Peale's death. Franklin Peale was also an employee of the Philadelphia Mint from 1833 to 1854.
Rubens Peale (1784-1865) opened the New York Museum of Natural History and Science in 1825. Following the economic Panic of 1837, Rubens became a gentleman farmer in the Pennsylvania countryside. He returned to Philadelphia in 1864 and began painting still lifes.

Administration
Existence and Location of Copies
35mm microfilm reel P21 (fr. 164-182, 261-675); P23 (fr. 158-159, 217); and P29 (fr. 5-31) available for use at Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan.
Existence and Location of Originals
REEL P21: Originals in the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Peale family papers.
Existence and Location of Originals
REEL P23, P29: Originals in the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Society Collection.
Author
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Microfilmed by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania for the Archives of American Art, 1955.

Using the Collection
Conditions Governing Access
The Archives of American art does not own the original papers. Use is limited to the microfilm copy.

Related Materials
The Archives of American Art holds the Rembrandt and Harriet Peale collection, circa 1820-1932 and the Rubens Peale diaries, 1855-1865. Also found at the Archives of American Art are the microfilmed Charles Willson Peale diaries and exhibition announcement, 1765-1826; microfilmed printed material relating to Rembrandt Peale, 1830-1862; microfilmed Titian Ramsay Peale Collection, 1771-1876; microfilmed selected papers from the Peale-Sellers collection, [circa 1767-1904]; and microfilmed Augusta Barker papers, 1875-1887.
The American Philosophical Society holds the Rembrandt Peale papers, 1808-1833 and the Peale family papers, 1705-1898. New York Public Library Archives and Manuscripts Division holds the Rembrandt Peale letters, 1835-1857.

Keywords
Keywords table of terms and types.
Keyword Terms Keyword Types
Art, American -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia Topic Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Painters -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia Occupation Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Peale, Franklin, 1795-1870 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Peale, Rembrandt, 1778-1860 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Peale, Rubens, 1784-1865 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Peale, Titian Ramsay, 1799-1885 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Sellers, Charles Coleman, 1903- Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Ord, George, 1781-1866 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Haines, Reuben, 1786-1831 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Peale, Charles Willson, 1741-1827 Personal Name Search Smithsonian Collections Search ArchiveGrid
Peale's Museum (Philadelphia, Pa.) Corporate 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/