Frank E. Schoonover Manuscript Collection

A Finding Aid to the Frank E. Schoonover Manuscript Collection

Helen Farr Sloan Library, Delaware Art Museum

Wilmington, Delaware
2002


Accessioned: Gift of Naomi Schoonover and Elizabeth Schoonover Cobb, 1977
Extent: 154 boxes
Processed: Leanne Dean, 1996
Restrictions: Certain restrictions apply
Contact Information:

Helen Farr Sloan Library
Delaware Art Museum
2301 Kentmere Parkway
Wilmington, DE 19806

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Biography of Frank E. Schoonover 
Organization of the Collection
Description of the Collection – Box List

 

BIOGRAPHY OF FRANK E. SCHOONOVER

Frank Earle Schoonover was born on August 19, 1877, in Oxford, New Jersey. In 1891, he graduated with high honors from a Trenton, New Jersey, high school, where he gave the salutatory address. After considering the idea of entering the ministry, he decided, in 1896, to attend art school at the Drexel Institute in Philadelphia. There he came under the beneficial influence of Howard Pyle, whose work he had copied from magazines throughout his boyhood. During the summers of 1898 and 1899, Schoonover received one of ten annual scholarships to Pyle’s summer school at Chadds Ford, Pennsylvania. At Drexel, Schoonover and Stanley M. Arthurs became class monitors for Pyle’s class.

In 1899, Schoonover moved to Wilmington; in the following year, he set up his studio at 1305 Franklin Street and later, in 1906, established a permanent studio at 1616 Rodney Street, where he remained for the rest of his career. In 1903, Schoonover, who since boyhood had loved the great outdoors, traveled by snowshoes and dog sled tin the Hudson Bay and James Bay areas of Quebec and Ontario in Canada. He sketched and studied his environment unceasingly in order to master the realistic depiction of the North American frontier. In 1907, during a trip to Europe in the company of Richard Sellers of Wilmington, Schoonover was particularly impressed with the great monuments and works of Italian art. He married Martha Culbertson of Philadelphia in 1911.

Besides doing magazine illustration, Schoonover wrote articles and stories and illustrated more than two hundred classics and children’s books. He and Gayle Hoskins organized the Wilmington Sketch Club in 1925, and in 1931 lectured at the School of Illustration for the John Herron Art Institute of Indianapolis. In 1942 he began his own school in Wilmington, where he taught art classes until 1968, when he was ninety-one years of age. Schoonover, a devout Episcopalian, devoted much energy to Immanuel Church, Wilmington, where he designed sixteen stained glass windows and served as warden to forty-one years until 1959. After a series of paralyzing strokes, which ended his artistic career in 1968, Schoonover died at the age of ninety-five in 1972.

Schoonover’s subject matter included cowboys, Indians and Canadian trappers. His forms were simple and well defined and his moods powerful. Later in his career, his styles became less rigid and more impressionistic. Schoonover was also an accomplished watercolorist and muralist and an avid photographer. He used photographs as references for his illustrations to remind himself of the mood and character of the models.

By Penelope B. Cope

Sources:

Taken from Elzea, Rowland and Elizabeth H. Hawkes, eds. A Small School of Art: The Students of Howard Pyle. Wilmington: Delaware Art Museum, 1980.

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ORGANIZATION OF THE COLLECTION

Series I. Personal & Biographical
Series II. Correspondence
Series III. Organizational Records
Series IV. Artwork
Series V. Illustrations
Series VI. Not Published Works Of Art
Series VII. Newspaper Clippings
Series VIII. Photographic Materials
Series IX. Subject Clippings
Series X. Ephemera
Series XI. Oversize

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DESCRIPTION OF THE COLLECTION

Series I. Personal & Biographical
Contains materials related to Schoonover’s personal life and family including daybooks, personal and financial papers, Christmas cards, and manuscripts.

Box 1 Daybooks – originals
Box 2 Daybooks – copies
Box 3 Daybooks – copies annotated
Box 4 Daybook transcripts
Box 5 Notebooks, diaries, etc.
Box 6 Personal & biographical – Anna Hoopes Material – Gertrude Brinklé Material
Box 7 Personal & biographical – Listing of major works – 90th Birthday – 1971
Box 8 Financial & legal – Abercrombie & Fitch – Hudson Bay
Box 9 Financial & legal – Insurance – Taxes
Box 10 Financial & legal – checks
Box 11 Financial & legal – checks
Box 12 Christmas Cards – 1919-1958
Box 13 Christmas Cards – 1960-1963, no date
Box 14 Exhibition catalogs
Box 15 Exhibition catalogs
Box 16 Manuscripts – published
Box 17 Manuscripts – published - The Edge of the Wilderness (book)
Box 18 Manuscripts – published - Frank Schoonover (book)
Box 19 Manuscripts – unpublished
Box 20 Printed matter – Artists Supplies
Box 21 Printed matter – “The Battle of Gettysburg” – Miscellaneous
Box 22 Printed matter – More Junior Authors – “The Year’s at the Spring”
Box 23 Jane Lea material

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Series II. Correspondence
Contains correspondence to and from Schoonover, as well as his family, divided into major designations of associations, business, not published works of art, personal, publications, and Miscellaneous

Box 24 Associations – American Federation of the Arts – Military Order of the Loyal Legion of the United States
Box 25 Associations – The National Association of Commercial Arts – Quill & Grill Club
Box 26 Associations – Raritan Valley Arts Association – Miscellaneous
Box 27 Business – Abercrombie & Fitch – Butte Evening News
Box 28 Business – Campbell Art Company – Federal Schools, Incorporated
Box 29 Business – Forbes Lithographic – Los Angeles Public Library
Box 30 Business – Lynn Public Library – Phoenix Art Institute
Box 31 Business – Phoenix Art Institute – Stein, Anita
Box 32 Business – Studio (1616 Rodney Street) – Weber, F.
Box 33 Business – Weber, F.
Box 34 Business – Wesleyan University – Not Published Works of Art – D’Ascenzo Studios
Box 35 Not Published Works of Art – Grammer, Carl Eckhardt, Memorial – Personal – Drexel Institute
Box 36 Personal – Dykes, Jeff C. – (Artists) Parrish, Maxfield
Box 37 Personal – (Artists) Peck, Henry J. – Schoonover, John (Colonel)
Box 38 Personal – Schoonover, John (Colonel) – Miscellaneous – Sympathy
Box 39 Personal – Miscellaneous – Publications - American Boy Magazine
Box 40 Publications - American Boy Magazine - Brandywine River Museum
Box 41 Publications - Century Magazine - Frank Schoonover, Illustrator of the North American Frontier
Box 42 Publications - Ginn & Company - Johnson, Merle
Box 43 Publications - Junior Red Cross Journal Pall Mall Magazine
Box 44 Publications - Pearson’s Magazine - Savage Arms Company
Box 45 Publications - Charles Scribner’s Sons - (Authors) Holland, Rupert Sargent
Box 46 Publications – (Authors) Kempton, Kenneth Payson – Miscellaneous – Wright, Mrs. B.W.

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Series III. Organizational Records
Contains organizational records for groups to which Schoonover belonged, most notably Immanuel Episcopal Church and the Wilmington Society for the Fine Arts.

Box 47 American Institute of Architects – Immanuel Episcopal Church – Vestry Records
Box 48 John Herron Art Institute – Public Works of Art Project
Box 49 Rehoboth Art League – Wilmington Sketch Club
Box 50 Wilmington Society of the Fine Arts

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Series IV. Artwork 
Contains originals and photographs of Schoonover artwork. Arranged to follow arrangement of illustrations and not published works of art.

Box 51 Bookplates – Stained Glass Windows
Box 52 Miscellaneous – Animals – Miscellaneous – [Pools for Frogs]
Box 53 Miscellaneous – Schoonover Students – Stewart, Walter – World War I

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Series V. Illustrations
Contains photographs, originals and printer’s proof of Schoonover published illustrations. Arrangement of serials is alphabetical by title and chronological within title. Books are arranged alphabetically by title.

Box 54 Morse listing - American Magazine
Box 55 Art & Progress - Harpers Magazine, 1912 November
Box 56 Harpers Magazine, 1913 April – Our Boys
Box 57 Outing Magazine - Princeton University Library Chronicle
Box 58 Red Book Magazine - Red Cross Magazine
Box 59 Scribner’s Magazine - Miscellaneous, Unidentified
Box 60 American Boy Magazine, 1918 March-1923 December
Box 61 American Boy Magazine, 1924-1932
Box 62 American Boy Magazine, 1933 January-1941 July/August
Box 63 AmericanColliersHousehold, & The Instructor
Box 64 Country Gentleman Magazine, 1917 December 8-1926 December
Box 65 Country Gentleman Magazine, 1927 January-1931 September
Box 66 Country Gentleman Magazine, 1932 August-1938 August
Box 67 Ladies Home Journal
Box 68 McCall’sOutdoor WorldPeoples PopularProgressive FarmerRed BookSaturday Evening PostScribner’sSundayYouth’s Companion
Box 69 Books - Aesop’s Fables - Frontier Days
Box 70 Books - The Girl of Tiptop - Plumed Snake Medicine
Box 71 Books - Princess of Mars - Miscellaneous, Unidentified
Box 72 Books – Oversize, Calendars, Advertisements, Trenton YMCA Pamphlet
Box 73 Unidentified

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Series VI. Not Published Works Of Art
Contains photographs of not published works of art divided into categories of easel paintings, murals, sculpture, and stained glass. Easel paintings are sub-divided into landscapes, portraits, and subject paintings.

Box 74 Landscapes – 1924-1945
Box 75 Landscapes – 1946-[1961], no date
Box 76 Portraits – Subject Paintings
Box 77 Stained Glass – Bookplates – Murals

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Series VII. Newspaper Clippings
Contains originals and photocopies of newspaper clippings arranged alphabetically by subject and chronologically with in subject.

Box 78 Artworks – Personal & Biographical – 1960′s
Box 79 Personal & Biographical – 1960′s-1970′s – Wilmington Society of the Fine Arts
Box 80 Photocopies

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Series VIII. Photographic materials
Contains photographs, lantern slides, and glass and film negatives arranged to mirror the remainder of the collection. Many archival prints were made in 1978 and the negatives destroyed. Where possible these prints have been matched with the original prints.

Box 81 Photographs – Scrapbooks from Chadds Ford – [1898-1899]
Box 82 Photographs – Photofile A-E5
Box 83 Photographs – Photofile E6-L2a
Box 84 Photographs – Photofile L2b-[U1]
Box 85 Photographs – Photofile [U1]-[U25]
Box 86 Photographs – Photofile [U26]-[U36]
Box 87 Photographs – Photofile [U36]-[U37]
Box 88 Photographs – Photofile [U37]-[U43]
Box 89 Photographs – Photofile 8×10
Box 90 Photographs – Personal & Biographical – Frank E. Schoonover – Schoonover Family Photographs
Box 91 Photographs – Personal & Biographical – Schoonover Family – Studio
Box 92 Photographs – Personal & Biographical – Drexel Institute of Technology – Schoonover Students
Box 93 Photographs – Models – Female/Male/Children
Box 94 Photographs – Photographs – Models – Illustrations – Publications
Box 95 Photographs – Models – Illustrations – General
Box 96 Photographs – Conservation/Restoration
Box 97 Photographs – Places – Africa – Montana
Box 98 Photographs – Places – Montana – United States
Box 99 Photographs – Things
Box 100 Negatives – 8″x10″ film
Box 101 Negatives – 5″x7″ film – Photofile A-U22
Box 102 Negatives – 5″x7″ film – Photofile U22-U43
Box 103 Negatives – 5″x7″ film – Corresponds to Boxes 51-90
Box 104 Negatives – 5″x7″ film – Corresponds to Boxes 91-
Box 105 Negatives – 5″x7″ film – Corresponding to: Boxes 94-98
Box 106 Negatives – 5″x7″ film – Corresponding to: Box 99
Box 107 Negatives – 5″x7″ film – Canada 1903 & 1911
Box 108 Negatives – 4″x5″ film – Corresponding to: Photofile Boxes 13-91
Box 109 Negatives – 4″x5″ film – Corresponding to: Boxes 92-99
Box 110 Negatives – 4″x5″ film – Color – Negatives & Transparencies
Box 111 Negatives – Rolls
Box 112 Negatives – 5″x7″ glass – Corresponding to: Photofile B2-K2
Box 113 Negatives – 5″x7″ glass – Corresponding to: Photofile K-12-U40
Box 114 Negatives – 5″x7″ glass – Corresponding to: Boxes 58-90
Box 115 Negatives – 5″x7″ glass – Corresponding to: Boxes 91-95
Box 116 Negatives – 5″x7″ glass – Corresponding to: Box 94, folders 2-72
Box 117 Negatives – 5″x7″ glass – Corresponding to: Box 94, folders 72-no folder
Box 118 Negatives – 5″x7″ glass – Corresponding to: Box 99, folder 1a-21
Box 119 Negatives – 5″x7″ glass – Corresponding to: Box 99, folder 23-37
Box 120 Negatives – 4″x5″ glass – Corresponding to: Boxes 51-99
Box 121 Lantern Slides – Photofile
Box 122 Lantern Slides – Immanuel Episcopal Church
Box 123 Lantern Slides – Camp Appoqinimink
Box 124 Lantern Slides – Work by Frank E. Schoonover
Box 125 Lantern Slides – Personal & Biographical – Mr. Clash – Landscapes & Portraits
Box 126 Lantern Slides – Murals & Stained Glass – Conservation/Restoration – Pre-Raphaelites & Howard Pyle

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Series IX. Subject Clippings
Contains two major sets of subject clippings files- those from Schoonover’s Drexel period and those he collected later. Each is arranged separately and filed alphabetically using Schoonover’s file headings.

Box 127 Book of portraits; Book of Drexel files
Box 128 Subject Clipping Files – Actors – Artists, Wood, Grant
Box 129 Subject Clipping Files – Artists, Wyeth, Andrew – Colorado, The West
Box 130 Subject Clipping Files – Color Reproductions – Heads
Box 131 Subject Clipping Files – Heads-Side view – Mailboxes
Box 132 Subject Clipping Files – Maps – Religious
Box 133 Subject Clipping Files – Religious, Dominicans – Western Scenery
Box 134 Subject Clipping Files – Wild Animals – Wood Shelter
Box 135 Drexel Clipping Files – A Alaska, The Klondyke – D-8 Japanese, Javanese, Siamese Temples
Box 136 Drexel Clipping Files – D-9 Lincoln – K-6 Photographyclp

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Series X. Ephemera
A collection of objects, honors and awards. Files belonging to Naomi Schoonover, Frank’s daughter-in-law.

Box 137 Audio Tapes
Box 138 Engravers blocks
Box 139 Miscellaneous Objects #1
Box 140 Miscellaneous Objects #2
Box 141 Miscellaneous Objects #3
Box 142 Miscellaneous Objects #4
Box 143 Illustration files for The Edge of the Wilderness and Frank Schoonover: Illustrator of the North American Frontier*
Box 144 Archive Administrative Files*
Box 145 Naomi Wright Schoonover’s files
Box 146 Palette

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Series XI. Oversize
Photographs, matted photographs, drawings, and other materials of large size. Materials in this section come from all other sections of the collection.

Box 147 Oversize #1 – Personal & Biographical, Illustrations, Works
Box 148 Oversize #2 – Delaware Art Museum Exhibit Photographs and Labels
Box 149 Oversize #3 – Miscellaneous Material
Box 150 Oversize #4 – Photographs and Artwork
Box 151 Oversize #5 – Scrapbook and Day Book Listing
Box 152 Oversize #6 – Sketches
Box 153 Oversize #7 – Proof sheets - The Edge of the Wilderness
Box 154 Oversize #8 – Map of Canada

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