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French & Company records, 1911-1998 (bulk 1950-1969)

French & Company (New York, N.Y.)

Available at Special Collections  SPECIAL COLLECTIONS - CONTACT REFERENCE  (990051** ) and other locations()

  • Title:
    French & Company records, 1911-1998 (bulk 1950-1969)
  • Author/Creator: French & Company (New York, N.Y.)
  • Creation Date: 1911-1998 (bulk 1950-1969)
  • Biographical/Historical Note: French & Company was co-founded by Mitchell Samuels in 1907. His son, Spencer Samuels, took over as president in the 1950s, then sold the firm to City Investing in 1959. When City Investing sold the company to Martin Zimet in 1968, much of the remaining stock of decorative art was sold at auction that year. The firm continued under the same name after the 1950s but with a changing inventory and clientele.
  • Arrangement: The records are organized in 7 series: Series I. Legal and business operations, 1922-1998, bulk 1953-1960; Series II. Financial, 1915-1959; Series III. Board of directors, 1954-1959; Series IV. Business dealings and correspondence, 1944-1960; Series V. Sales records, 1927-1998, bulk 1950-1998; Series VI. Exhibitions and publicity, 1930-1961, bulk 1956-1967; Series VII. Architectural drawings, ca. 1910-1950.
  • Physical Desc.: 6 linear ft. (17 boxes, 3 flat file folders) + ADDS (1 box).
    1 videocassette (VHS Dub) : sd. Original..
  • Summary: The collection contains the assorted business records of French & Company that were still in the possession of Spencer A. Samuels & Company in 1999. These records include investment reports and other financial papers; business correspondence, including board minutes; and correspondence regarding professional appraisals and sales, with some photographs of art works. Several of the sales files relate to tapestries. A portion of this archive is comprised of reports and publicity photographs that document the firm's reorganization in the context of a changing clientele and art market. One videotape documents the opening of French & Company on Madison Ave., New York City. Architectural drawings appear to be for renovations for clients, and for French & Company offices and galleries.
    Nine folders of papers regarding J. Paul Getty and the J. Paul Getty Museum include copies of letters from Spencer Samuels to Getty concerning the appraisal of his art collection, and other correspondence between Mr. Getty (and J.P. Getty Museum employees) and Mr. Samuels, as well as newspaper clippings about the J. Paul Getty Museum. Six folders hold papers regarding sales to other clients. A small number of files are from Spencer A. Samuels & Company, the firm Samuels founded after selling French & Company. Monographs have been separated from the archive to the repository's library. The bulk of the firm's paper records were lost in a flood.
  • Language: English
  • Other Archival Locations: Related collection: Stock sheets and ledgers of French & Company, 1909-1968, accessioned as a separate collection, Accn. no. 840027.
    Related collection: French & Company photographic archive, 1920-1968, accessioned as a separate collection, Accn. no. 71.P.1.
  • Form/Genre: Architectural drawings (visual works)
    Black-and-white photographs
    Color photographs
    Photographic transparencies
    Color slides
  • Subjects: French & Company (New York, N.Y.) J. Paul Getty Museum Spencer A. Samuels & Company Art galleries, Commercial -- New York (State) -- New York Art dealers -- New York (State) -- New York Art -- Collectors and collecting Tapestry -- Collectors and collecting
  • Contributors: Getty, J. Paul (Jean Paul), 1892-1976. Samuels, Spencer. Spencer A. Samuels & Company. J. Paul Getty Museum.
  • ID/Accession Number: 1550-726
  • Access/Rights: Open for use by qualified researchers; contact repository for information regarding access.
  • OCLC Record Number: 82675390
  • Source: GRI Library Catalog

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