Public Works of Art Project, Maryland Division Records
BMA.14

Summary Information

Repository
Archives and Manuscripts Collections
Creator - Correspondent
McKinney, Roland J., (Roland Joseph), b. 1898
Title
Public Works of Art Project, Maryland Division Records
ID
BMA.14
Date [inclusive]
1933 Dec - 1934 Sep
Extent
0.8 Linear feet ; 2 boxes
Language
English
Abstract
The Public Works of Art Project, Maryland Division papers measure .8 linear feet and date from January 1934 to July 1934. They contain correspondence and other records documenting the Maryland projects supported by this program.

Return to Table of Contents »


Administrative History

The Public Works of Art Project was the first of the New Deal programs created specifically to provide work for unemployed artists. The PWAP was established by the U.S. Treasury Department with an allocation of funds from the Civil Works Administration. The project ran from December of 1933 and until May of 1934 and generated nearly 16,000 works of art nationwide.

The states receiving funding from PWAP were divided into regions. Region Four included Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia. The states within Region Four each had a chairman that answered to Grant H. Code, the Regional Coordinator at the Treasury Department.

In Maryland, the PWAP was administered by Mr. R. J. McKinney, director of the Baltimore Museum of Art from 1929-1937. Although most artists were dropped from the PWAP payroll at the end of April 1934, certain projects may have been completed or continued after that date. These projects were possibly funded by the Federal Relief Administration and the Baltimore Emergency Relief Commission but may have also pulled from other sources of state and local aid. November through December of 1934, an exhibition of works by the PWAP Region Four artists was held at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, DC.

While the PWAP operated in Maryland, it employed roughly 40 artists and generated over 100 works of art that were allocated to public buildings and institutions throughout Maryland. The artists worked on their assigned projects on site or in their studios. Two Maryland artists were sent to Federal Relief Project work camps in Maryland. Aaron Sopher was sent to the New Germany Camp in Grantsville and Fredric Farley was assigned to Avalon Camp in Avalon Maryland. A list of the artists who were employed by PWAP and the institutions that received their work is below:

Artists and Locations

Department of the Interior
 Marie Alain (artist), J. A. Carroll, Joseph Gisriel, Samuel Philpot, Joseph Proser (assistants)
Catonsville High School
 Leonard Bahr
Peale Musuem & Hamilton Junior High School
 Herman Beeker
Coppin Normal School & Baltimore Museum of Art
 Henry Berge
William S. Baer School
 Walter Bohanan
Harriet Lane Home
 Lillian Causey
Montebello School
 Raymond Chard (artist), George Appell (assistant)
Hagerstown High School
 Marcella Cox
City College
 Hopper Emmory
Bel Air Court House
 Marion Ewald
Unknown
 Fredric Farley
Lawrence Dunbar High School
 Elton Fax (artist), Dennis Gross (assistant)
William S. Baer High School
 Baccio Forni
Catonsville Elementary School
 Mae Galletly
United States Marine Hospital
 Wendall Galloway
Harriet Lane Home
 Edwin Hall
Easton High School
 Fletcher Hanks
Baltimore Public Schools
 Arthur Heiss
Peale Museum & Baltimore Museum
 Ben Kurtz
Polytechnic High School
 Chet La More (artist), William F. Deegan (assistant)
Baltimore Public Schools
 J.C. McPherson
Aberdeen Proving Grounds
 George B. Meyer
Aberdeen Proving Grounds
 J. Henry Miller
Flag House
 Larry Redda
Harriet Lane Home
 Florence Riefle
Hagerstown Junior High School
 Alonso Ritter
Enoch Pratt Free Library
 Paul Roche
Peale Museum
 Harry Rogerson (artist), Bertha Burroughs (assistant)
Baltimore Public Schools
 Edward Rosenfeld
City College
 Charles Schueker
Unknown
 Aaron Sopher
Patterson Park Junior High School
 Sam Swerdloff (artist), C. Hisley (assistant)
Edgewood Arsenal
 Edwin Tunis
Cumberland High School
 Jack Wentz
Francis Scott Key Junior High School
 Charles Walther
Kernan Children’s Home
 Frances Woodhall

Return to Table of Contents »


Scope and Contents

The Public Works of Art Project Maryland Division Records contain the correspondence, records and documentation of the activities surrounding the administration of the project in Maryland. The collection contains .8 linear feet materials in two boxes.

Although the bulk of the collection is correspondence, the records also contain an incomplete set of photographs of works completed, payroll information, applications and telegrams.

Return to Table of Contents »


Administrative Information

Publication Information

Archives and Manuscripts Collections 2009

Restrictions on Access

The collection is open for research.

Restrictions on Use

Records are the physical property of the Archives, Baltimore Museum of Art. Copyright for materials produced by the Baltimore Museum of Art is held by the museum. All other materials, except in cases where material has passed into public domain, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. For further information, consult a Library staff member.

Provenance

Found in the Prints, Drawings and Photographs Department in 2008.

Processing Information

Processed by Jodi Hoover in 2009.

Return to Table of Contents »


Related Materials

Location of Associated Material

National Archives and Records Administration.

Return to Table of Contents »


Corporate Name(s)

  • Public Works of Art Project. (United States)

Return to Table of Contents »


Collection Inventory

 Series 1. Correspondence.   0.6 Linear feet ; 1.5 boxes

Scope and Contents

Correspondence consists of three sets of correspondence arranged alphabetically

Incoming. 

Box Folder

 A.  1933 Dec - 1934 Sep 

Scope and Contents

Incoming correspondence to R. J. McKinney regarding various aspects of the project. The materials are arranged alphabetically by sender. This sub-series includes letters from many of the artists involved in the PWAP. In some cases, the letters document their entire involvement in the project, from requesting applications to information regarding their final paycheck.

1 1-23

Outgoing- Director's Copies. 

Box Folder

 B.  1933 Dec - 1934 Sep 

Scope and Contents

Outgoing correspondence, probably from R.J. McKinney’s files. These letters viewed with the incoming correspondence form a fairly complete idea of the conversations between recipients

1 24-45

Outogoing- Administrative Assistant's copies. 

Box Folder

 C.  1933 Dec - 1934 Sep 

Scope and Contents

Outgoing correspondence,in many cases duplicates materials found in the previous series. The materials in this sub-series are probably from the files of Miss Bernice C. Smith who was McKinney’s personal assistant during the course of this project. Some of the correspondence includes the final typewritten version as well as the handwritten version with notes by McKinney.

2 1-21

Return to Table of Contents »


 Series 2. Other Records.   0.2 Linear feet ; .5 boxes

Scope and Contents

Consists of other materials and correspondence relating to the PWAP in Maryland. These materials include minutes from a meeting of the Regional Chairmen, copies of telegrams received, several artist applications and payroll information. The payroll information includes details about dates and amounts paid to each artist as well as documentation regarding when artists were dropped from the PWAP payroll.

Also included, incoming Treasury Department correspondence. These letters cover specific aspects of PWAP administration and are organized by sender. Although the incoming correspondence from these persons was kept separate, the replies can be found in the outgoing correspondence sub-series. Other folders contain correspondence from institutions requesting works of art, information regarding the transfer project funding from the Treasury Department to the Federal Relief Administration as well as records documenting estimates and expenditures related to the project.

Box Folder

 1933 Dec - 1934 Jul 

Contents

Copies of telegrams received December 1933- July 1934

2 22

 1934 Feb 20 - 21 

Contents

Minutes of meeting of regional chairmen of the Public Works of Art Project

2 23

 1934 Jan 1 - Jul 9  

Contents

Incoming correspondence from C.M. Council Treasury Dept. Chief Clerk, Region 4

2 24

 1933 Dec - 1934 Aug 

Contents

Incoming correspondence from Grant Code, Treasury Department, Coordinator, Region 4. Includes photographs documenting works completed and an inventory list.

2 25

 Undated 

Contents

Incoming correspondence from C.M. Dows,Treasury Department?

2 26

 1933 Dec - 1934 Mar 

Contents

Incoming correspondence and telegrams from Duncan Phillips.

2 27

 1933 Dec - 1934 Aug 

Contents

Incoming correspondence from Edward Rowan, Treasury Department, Assistant Technical Director

2 28

 1934 Jan - Apr 

Contents

Incoming correspondence from Forbes Watson, Treasury Department, Technical Director

2 29

 1934 Jan - Jun 

Contents

PWAP Region 4 payroll information and list of works completed

2 30

 1934 Jan – Apr 

Contents

Records regarding when artists were dropped from PWAP payroll

2 31

 Undated 

Contents

Misc. notes and PWAP records

2 32

 1934 Jan - Apr 

Contents

Misc. PWAP records

2 33

 1934 Apr - Jul 

Contents

PWAP records mostly regarding transfer of projects from regional to federal management

2 34

 1934 Mar – Oct 

Contents

Miscellaneous incoming correspondence

2 35

 Undated 

Contents

Several PWAP artist applications and a list of PWAP territories and chairpersons

2 36

Return to Table of Contents »