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Museum Building Records

0002

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Pennsylvania. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Summary Information

Repository:
University of Pennsylvania: Penn Museum Archives
Title:
Museum Building Records
Date [inclusive]:
1892-2007
Call Number:
0002
Extent:
4.8 linear foot
Language:
English
Abstract:
The first section of the University of Pennsylvania Museum building, designed to exhibit the large archaeological and ethnological collections amassed in the preceding twelve years, was opened in 1899. The architects, Wilson Eyre, Jr., Cope and Stewardson, and Frank Miles Day and Brother, envisioned this first section as the westernmost wing of an immense building, at least three times the size of the present museum. The second section, the Harrison Rotunda, consisting of the exhibit hall and auditorium, was added in 1915. It featured a dome constructed by Rafael Guastavino. In 1926 the Eckley B. Coxe, Jr. Egyptian Wing opened, followed by the Administrative Wing (nowadays called the "Sharpe" Wing after the third floor gallery bearing that name) in 1929. Building activity stopped after 1929 until construction began on the Academic Wing in 1969. This section, designed by Mitchell/Giurgola Associates is the only part of the building that deviates from the original plan by Wilson Eyre. It opened in 1971. The collection consists of four series in nine boxes with additional oversize items in the plans and map cases.
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Biography/History

The first section of the University of Pennsylvania Museum building, designed to exhibit the large archaeological and ethnological collections amassed in the preceding twelve years, was opened in 1899. The architects, Wilson Eyre, Jr., Cope and Stewardson, and Frank Miles Day and Brother envisioned this section as the westernmost wing of an immense building, at least three times the size of the present museum. The second section, the Harrison Rotunda, consisting of the exhibit hall and Auditorium, was added in 1915. It featured a dome constructed by Rafael Guastavino. 1926 saw the opening of the Eckley B. Coxe, Jr. Egyptian Wing, followed by the Administrative Wing (nowadays called the "Sharpe" Wing after the third floor gallery bearing that name) in 1929. After 1929, building activity stopped until 1968, when construction began on the Academic Wing. This section, designed by Mitchell/Giurgola Associates is the only part of the building that deviates from the original plan by Wilson Eyre. It opened in 1971.

Many public buildings of the late nineteenth century were constructed following a competition among architects who submitted designs. The firm whose design was designated as best won the job. This was not the case with the University Museum construction. A building committee, organized in 1892 selected architects who were teaching at the new School of Architecture at Penn to draw up the plans. Those chosen, Wilson Eyre, Frank Miles Day, Walter Cope and John Stewardson were all prominent in their field and had been founding members of the T-Square Club.

Wilson Eyre was born in 1858, the son of an attorney living in Florence, Italy. When Wilson was eleven, the family returned to North America, making their home in Canada for two years. Wilson completed his education in Canada and Newport Rhode Island, enrolling at M.I.T. in architecture. He did not complete the program there but went on to be apprenticed with James P. Sims a Philadelphia architect. When Sims died three years later Eyre was named to manage the office despite his youth and limited experience.

Eyre was best known for "domestic architecture" that combined his European inspiration with the fanciful. He did not subscribe to a particular school of work but gained recognition and respect for his unique designs.

The son of an English immigrant tailor, Frank Miles Day was raised in Philadelphia but spent his summers in New England. He attended private schools and then enrolled at the University of Pennsylvania where he was first exposed to an architecture class. Day graduated as class valedictorian in 1883. He immediately travelled to London where he continued his studies at the Royal Institute of British Architects. His first job was with the English architect Basil Champneys where he remained for four years.

After returning to the United States, Day worked with George T. Pearson and later in the office of Addison Hutton. In 1883, Day entered and won the competition to design the Broad Street Headquarters of the Art Club. He then formed his own firm hiring architects and draftsman from the Architectural program at Penn.

Walter Cope was born in Philadelphia and educated at the Friends School in Germantown. Cope also attended the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts followed by a fourteen month trip to England and France to sketch then entered the offices of Addison Hutton where he remained for six months before training with Theophilus Parsons Chandler. Cope taught Architecture at the University of Pennsylvania for ten years then became the president of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts. Cope partnered with John Stewardson in their own firm and became known for their academic buildings and campus designs. Often regarded as Masters of the Collegiate Gothic style, Cope and Stewardson influenced the architecture of collegiate buildings all over the country.

John Stewardson was born in 1860 and educated in private schools in Philadelphia and at the Adams Academy in Quincy, Massachusetts. He entered Harvard University but left in 1879 to attend the Atelier Pascal in Paris. In 1882, Stewardson returned to the United States. He worked briefly at the firms of T.P. Chandler and Furness and Evans.

In 1884, Stewardson was again travelling in Europe with his friend Wilson Eyre, Jr.. Upon his return, he joined his childhood friend Walter Cope in the firm of Cope and Stewardson. They are best known for collegiate architecture, designing buildings at Bryn Mawr College, Princeton University, Washington University in St. Louis, and the University of Pennsylvania.

As a prominent Philadelphia architect, Stewardson was a founding member of the T-Square Club, and served for a time as its president. Stewardson lectured at the new School of Architecture at the University of Pennsylvania beginning in 1892.

Scope and Contents

The first section of the University of Pennsylvania Museum building, designed to exhibit the large archaeological and ethnological collections amassed in the preceding twelve years, was opened in 1899. The architects, Wilson Eyre, Jr., Cope and Stewardson, and Frank Miles Day and Brother, envisioned this first section as the westernmost wing of an immense building, at least three times the size of the present museum. The second section, the Harrison Rotunda, consisting of the exhibit hall and auditorium, was added in 1915. In 1926 the Eckley B. Coxe, Jr. Egyptian Wing opened, followed in 1929 by the Administrative Wing (nowadays called the "Sharpe" Wing after the third floor gallery bearing that name). Building activity stopped after 1929 but resumed in 1968 with the construction of the Academic Wing. This section, designed by Mitchell/Giurgola Associates is the only part of the building that deviates from the original plan by Wilson Eyre. It opened in 1971.

The collection is divided into four series, the chronological files, the Historic Structure Report of 2005, ledgers and diaries and oversize items related to the Historic Structure Report and Master Plan. The order is maintained from previous processing activity. Many files are still in use by the Superintendent's Office and numerous architectural sketches and plans for the original buildings are located in the School of Fine Arts and the School of Architecture at the University of Pennsylvania.

The chronological files follow the history of the building and its improvements and additions. The earliest files deal with the construction of the Free Museum of Science and Art, the museum's original name. Records include permits, correspondence with city government and others, drawings and artist conceptions. As construction/renovation continued on the Harrison Rotunda, Coxe Wing and the Sharpe Wing, the records provide preliminary drawings and proposals, administrative correspondence, specifications for heating, ventilation and electrical components and general correspondence.

Five folders are designated for the Chairman of the Anthropology Department. Correspondence with faculty and grant organizations, meeting notes and specifications for the research wing, including equipment are present.

The Academic Wing materials include addenda to "drawing specifications," some correspondence and a folder on the computer control system.

Six folders comprise the records of the N.E.A. Museum Renovation Program under Richard Craig. These include memos, meeting notes and grant requests. A group of prepared reports address the "Historical Survey," "Existing Situation," "Moisture Problem," "Main Entrance," and "Signage."

Boxes six and seven hold various reports, studies and project records along with attendance totals from 2004 to 2006. Records of the "Master Plan" complete the chronological files.

The Historic Structure Report of 2005 is contained in box seven. It consists of four volumes of text and four appendices.

The Ledgers and Diaries series comprises records from the early museum to more modern times. They are bound volumes stored in the archives' bookcases. The records of the Building Committee from 1895-1897 begin this group of records. The Watchman's Clock books contain records of attendance and other museum contacts from 1900 to 1919. Superceding the Watchman's books in 1923 were the records of the daily visitor counts which maintained these numbers until 1937. A few books concentrating on similar information follow the count books. The series is completed by staff sign-in books from 1951 to 1979, the primary records of attendance for this period, and a book of group rental information from 1963 to 1979.

The oversize materials consist of drawings, plans and spreadsheets contained in a flat box with the collection(box number 8). Included with this group are feasibility studies, components for the Master Plan(2004-2006)and the F.A.R.E project. A group of plans and drawings are also listed in Special Collections.(See Below)

For additional records in the Archives see: MA1986-20 Ledgers MA1986-44 Rental Letters See also: Photographic Archives— Standard Size Prints— Museum Building

Special Collections— Oversize Plans and Drawings— Museum Building (in P-1, M-1, M-2, M-3, and M-71) See the listing in this finding aid.

Administrative Information

Publication Information

University of Pennsylvania: Penn Museum Archives,  11/26/2014

Finding Aid Author

Finding aid prepared by Jody Rodgers

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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)
  • Mitchell/Giurgola Associates.
Personal Name(s)
  • Conyers, Christopher B.
  • Cope , Walter, 1860-1902
  • Coxe, Jr., Eckley B., b. 1872-d. 1916
  • Craig, Richard T.
  • Day, Frank Miles, 1861-1918
  • Eyre, Jr., Wilson, 1858-1944
  • Furness, William H., III
  • Guastavino, Rafael, 1842-1908
  • Houston, Samuel F., 1867-1952
  • Stevenson, Sara Yorke, 1847-1921
  • Stewardson, John, 1858-1896
Subject(s)
  • Museum Renovation Project

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Collection Inventory

Historic Structure Report 2005, 2005.

Box

Volume I Text 2005 (1 of 4).

7

Volume I Text 2005 (2 of 4).

7

Volume I Text 2005 (3 of 4).

7

Volume I Text 2005 (4 of 4).

7

Volume II Appendices 2005 (1 of 4).

7

Volume II Appendices 2005 (2 of 4).

7

Volume II Appendices 2005 (3 of 4).

7

Volume II Appendices 2005 (4 of 4).

7

Ledgers and Diaries, 1900-1979.

Volume

Minute Book: Building Committee; Department of Archaeology and Palentology, 1895 to 1897; 10” x 7”.

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1900 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1901 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1902 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1903 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1904 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1905 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1906 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1908 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1909 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1910 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1911 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1912 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1913 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1914 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1915 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1916 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls, 1917 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls 1918 (4 x 15”).

bound

Journal: Records of watchman’s clock; visitor count; mail; telephone calls 1919 to January 20, 1920 (4 x 15”) [new watchman in January].

bound

Museum Diary: records of number of visitors daily, 1923 (6 ¾ x 8 ¼”).

bound

Museum Diary: records of number of visitors daily, 1924 (6 ¾ x 8 ¼”).

bound

Museum Diary: records of number of visitors daily, 1929 (6 ¾ x 8 ¼”).

bound

Museum Diary: records of number of visitors daily, 1930 (6 ¾ x 8 ¼”).

bound

Museum Diary: records of number of visitors daily, 1932 (6 ¾ x 8 ¼”).

bound

Museum Diary: records of number of visitors daily, 1934 (5 ½ x 8”).

bound

Museum Diary: records of number of visitors daily, 1935 (5 ½ x 8”).

bound

Museum Diary: records of number of visitors daily, 1936 (5 ½ x 8”).

bound

Museum Diary: records of number of visitors daily, 1937 (5 ½ x 8”).

bound

Attendance Book 1900-1936 (4 x 6”).

bound
Box

Daily Books 1951-1977.

9

Daily Books 1978-1996.

10

Sign-in Books 1961-1967.

12

Sign-in Books 1967-1973.

13

Sign-in Books 1973-1979.

14

M.F.L. Book [group rentals] 1963-1979.

12

Oversize, 1997-2003.

Oversize

New West Entrance Feasibility Study-Final Report (2 copies).

8

New West Entrance Existing Conditions and Program Requests.

8

Feasibility Study Reinstallation of Egyptian Gallery Vol. I.

8

Feasibility Study Reinstallation of Egyptian Gallery Vol. II.

8

Master Plan (1 of 3) Space Inventory 2006.

8

Master Plan (2 of 3) Proposed work plan 2005.

8

Master Plan (3 of 3) User Group Summary 2006.

8

Dagit Saylor Associates F.A.R.E. project 2004.

8

Gallery Allocation drawings 2006.

8

Chronological Files, 1892-2007.

Box

Furness Library 1892 Letter to Sara Yorke Stevenson.

1

Preliminary to Main Building 1894-1895.

1

Building Fund 1894-1899.

1

Main Building 1896.

1

Main Building 1897.

1

Main Building 1898.

1

Main Building 1899 (1 of 2).

1

Main Building 1899 (2 of 2).

1

Main Building-Receipts 1898-1900.

1

Correspondence 1900-1911.

1

Correspondence-Houston files 1900-1910.

2

Harrison Rotunda 1908-1917.

2

Harrison Rotunda Specifications, Museum addition 1912.

2

Harrison Rotunda Specifications, heat and ventilation 1913.

2

Commercial Museum Litigation 1916.

2

Coxe Wing 1924-1926.

2

Coxe Wing Specifications, labor and materials 1922.

2

Coxe Wing Specifications, heating and ventilation 1922.

2

Coxe Wing Specifications, electric lighting 1923.

2

Administrative(Sharpe)Wing Preliminary drawings 1925.

2

Administrative(Sharpe)Wing-Tablet for Coxe Wing 1925-1926.

2

Administrative(Sharpe)Wing-May to December 1926.

2

Administrative(Sharpe)Wing-1927.

2

Administrative(Sharpe)Wing-1928.

3

Administrative(Sharpe)Wing-Specifications, Extension to Museum 1927.

3

Administrative(Sharpe)Wing-Electrical Specifications 1927.

3

Administrative(Sharpe)Wing-Heating Specifications 1927.

3

Alterations to electrical system-1897 unit (1927).

3

Alterations to heating system-1897 unit (1927).

3

Administrative(Sharpe)Wing 1928-1931.

3

Correspondence 1945-1964.

3

Correspondence 1965-1968.

3

Academic Wing-Chairman, Anthropology Department (1 of 5).

3

Academic Wing-Chairman, Anthropology Department (2 of 5).

3

Academic Wing-Chairman, Anthropology Department (3 of 5).

3

Academic Wing-Chairman, Anthropology Department (4 of 5).

4

Academic Wing-Chairman, Anthropology Department (5 of 5).

4

Improvement to basement, Northwest Wing 1966.

4

Alterations to West Wing for Anthropology Department 1966.

4

Academic Wing 1965.

4

Academic Wing 1966.

4

Academic Wing 1967.

4

Academic Wing Museum Extension 1966.

4

Building regulations 1967, 1969.

4

New Wing-Facts and Figures.

4

Academic Wing Jan. 1968-June 1969.

4

Academic Wing July-Dec. 1969.

4

Academic Wing "Addendum No. 2 to drawings and specifications" 1969.

5

Academic Wing Jan. 1970-Aug. 1971.

5

Academic Wing Aug. 1971-Dec. 1971.

5

Warden Garden Museum-Fiscal Records 1977-1978.

5

C.Conyers Correspondence 1969-1973.

5

Correspondence 1972.

5

Correspondence 1975-1976.

5

Correspondence 1977-1978.

5

Computer Control System 1977.

5

N.E.A. Museum Renovation Project 1979 (1 of 6).

5

N.E.A. Museum Renovation Project 1979 (2 of 6).

5

N.E.A. Museum Renovation Project 1980 (3 of 6).

5

N.E.A. Museum Renovation Project 1980-1981 (4 of 6).

5

N.E.A. Museum Renovation Project 1981 (5 of 6).

5

N.E.A. Museum Renovation Project 1981 (6 of 6).

5

Richard Craig-Memos, meeting notes.

5

"Edited History for Archaeological Programming" 1981 (1 of 2).

6

"Edited History for Archaeological Programming" 1981 (2 of 2).

6

Roof Renovation Report 1983 (1 of 2).

6

Roof Renovation Report 1983 (2 of 2).

6

Life, Safety Project-Mar.-May 1988.

6

Life, Safety Project-June-Aug. 1988.

6

Life, Safety Project Sept.-Nov. 1988.

6

HVAC Feasibility Study April 2000.

6

HVAC Feasibility Study September 2000.

6

Correspondence-Mainwaring 2002.

6

Attendance-Fiscal Year 2004.

6

Attendance Fiscal Year-2005.

7

Attendance Fiscal Year-2006.

7

Master Plan-proposal/reports 2005-2007.

7

Master Plan-Report "Creating A Museum of Ideas" 2006.

7

Master Plan-Correspondence 2006-2007.

7

Master Plan-Phasing 2006-2007.

7