Museum Archives

The Amon Carter Museum Archives collection was established in 1991 with a two-year grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission. The museum acquires, preserves, and makes accessible collections of private papers and institutional records of enduring value.

Scheduling an Appointment

Archival collections are available by appointment to qualified researchers who demonstrate a need to use the unique materials in the collection. The collection descriptions that follow will help the researcher determine if the museum houses materials relevant to his or her research. To make an appointment, or for assistance with a reference query, contact the museum archivist at 817.738.1933 or by fax at 817.989.5079.

  • A written request for an appointment should include proposed research dates and a summary of the research topic. This summary will help the archives staff assist you in identifying all relevant materials.
  • Please schedule visits at least two weeks in advance to ensure the availability of staff and the materials requested. Note that an appointment is not official until confirmed by an archives staff member.
  • Laptop computers are allowed, but scanners are prohibited. Photocopying services are provided; however, photocopying is restricted to published items and must adhere to copyright law.
  • Please note that access to the collections at the Amon Carter Museum does not imply permission to copy, quote, publish, or otherwise make public use of any part of the collection. The researcher assumes the responsibility to secure such permissions, including permission from the Amon Carter Museum, prior to use.
  • Limited reference service for specific information is also available. Reference service is limited to thirty minutes per request.

Institutional Records

Institutional records are records in any format generated in the course of museum business. Several series of these records are available to researchers. Some restrictions may apply.

  • Exhibition files: Records and photographs provide written and visual documentation of both in-house and traveling exhibitions appearing at the Carter since 1961. For assistance in determining potential subjects covered in these materials, see the exhibition history.
  • Exhibition/publication research: Many of the research materials collected by curators for past exhibitions and publications are available to researchers. Since not all research on all exhibitions still exists and since these materials also include exhibitions and publications that were planned but never realized, researchers are encouraged to contact the museum archivist about specific subjects covered.
  • Documentary photographs: These photographs document the development of the museum's physical plant and events held at the museum. The series includes images of the site in 1959 and 1960 prior to construction, the original building opening in 1961, the subsequent additions in 1964 and 1977, and the 2001 expansion project.
  • Scrapbooks: Forty-four scrapbooks contain clippings and press releases dating from 1961 through 1993. These scrapbooks also include information on the Kimbell Art Museum, the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, and the Cultural District in general.
  • Public program audiotapes: Audiotapes of many of the museum's public programs since December 1977 are available. Public programs include gallery talks, lectures, and symposiums. Contact the museum archivist for more information on the programs available.

Private Papers and Records

The museum has acquired a number of collections of private papers and records that support research of the institution's art collections. A brief overview of the collections in the archives follows. Unless noted, these collections are open to researchers, and finding aids are available from the museum archivist. For information regarding photographs related to photographers' papers, call 817.989.5175.

  • American Forts Research Collection: 7 linear feet of materials accumulated on military fortifications in the United States gathered by Willard Robinson (1935–1991). View finding aid.
  • Earl Alonzo Brininstool Collection: 3.5 linear feet of materials accumulated on the history of the American West gathered by Earl Alonzo Brininstool (1870–1957). View finding aid.
  • Amon G. Carter Papers: 25.5 linear feet of records relating to the art collection of Amon Carter (1879–1955) and the early years of the Amon Carter Museum of American Art. View Finding Aid. Additional Carter papers are housed in the Special Collections at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth. View finding aid.
  • Carlotta Corpron Papers: 1.5 linear feet of materials from the estate of photographer Carlotta Corpron (1901–1988). View finding aid.
  • Nell Dorr Papers: 4 linear feet of materials from the estate of pictorial photographer Nell Dorr (1893–1989). View finding aid. A further 3 linear feet of materials are on extended loan to the museum from Dorr's daughter Barbara Tenery. View finding aid.
  • Laura Gilpin Papers: Approximately 40 linear feet of materials from the estate of photographer Laura Gilpin (1891–1979). View finding aid.
  • Sarah Ann Hardinge Family Papers: 5.8 linear feet relating to early Texas immigration and settlement by Sarah Ann Hardinge (1824–1913). View finding aid. Hardinge's diary and artworks, created while in Texas, can be found on the Encountering Texas, 1846–1856 site.
  • Blanche McVeigh Papers: 1.25 linear feet of materials related to the work of Fort Worth artist Blanche McVeigh (1895–1970), given to the museum by McVeigh's niece, Judy McVeigh Cordell. View finding aid.
  • Eliot Porter Papers: Approximately 40 linear feet of materials from the estate of photographer Eliot Porter (1901–1990). View finding aid. The archives also includes a further 3 linear feet of materials donated to the museum by family and friends — the Porter Family Collection, the Stephen Porter Collection, the Patrick E. Porter Collection, the W. Powell Cottrille Collection, and the Eliot Porter/Ansel Adams Correspondence Collection. An extensive survey of Porter's work is featured on the Eliot Porter Collection Guide site.
  • Helen Post Papers: 1 linear foot of materials related to images of Native Americans in the southwestern United States made by documentary photographer Helen Post (1907–1978). View finding aid.
  • Roman Bronze Works Archive: 77 linear feet of business records from the Roman Bronze Works Foundry, one of the leading bronze foundries in the first half of the twentieth century. View finding aid.
  • Clara Sipprell Papers: 2.25 linear feet of materials related to the work of pictorial photographer Clara Sipprell (1885–1975). View finding aid.
  • Erwin E. Smith Papers: 2.5 linear feet of materials related to the work of cowboy photographer Erwin E. Smith (1886–1947). View finding aid. A further 2.5 linear feet of materials was given to the museum by Smith's half-sister, Mary Alice Pettis. View finding aid. An extensive survey of Smith's work is featured on the Cowboy Photographer: Erwin E. Smith site
  • Ruth Carter Stevenson Papers: 9.2 linear feet of materials related to the life and career of arts patron and museum administrator Ruth Carter Stevenson (1923–2013). View finding aid.
  • Karl Struss Papers: 3 linear feet of materials relating to the work of pictorial photographer and cinematographer Karl Struss (1886–1981). The Struss Papers are in three parts, acquired from Struss' grandson, Craig Rhea Collection, friends, John and Susan Harvith Collection, and his agent, Stephen White Collection.
  • Bror Utter Papers: 1.75 linear feet of materials from the estate of Fort Worth artist Bror Utter (1913–1993). View finding aid.