Scope and Content Note


Daniel Williams devoted more than 30 years to writing and revising his massive biography on sculptor, George Grey Barnard. Although the book was never published, this collection documents Williams's research and writing of this 1300-plus-page volume of biographical material. Included in the collection is correspondence, articles, newspaper clippings, ephemera, notes, many typescript drafts of the book, and photographs.

Williams kept correspondence with a number of people and institutions regarding the writing of his biography, including George Grey Barnard and his family. The "Williams correspondence" series includes a significant amount of correspondence from Barnard, Edna Barnard, and Harry Maule, a representative from Doubleday, Doran & Company, the publishing firm that gave Williams a writing contract for the biography in 1938. As evidenced in their correspondence, Williams and Barnard maintained an amicable relationship. Williams frequently visited Barnard, transcribing their conversations and interviews to use as subject matter. Barnard generally supported the effort, although his letters and annotations to various manuscript drafts show he had many reservations and stipulations regarding the content of the biography. Nonetheless, Barnard gave Williams his own personal correspondence with family and friends to use in the biography. These letters make up their own series called "Barnard correspondence."

Although unsuccessful in publishing the biography, Williams did get at least two articles on the sculptor into print. These are filed in the "Reference" series along with articles by other authors, including four written by Barnard, and newspaper clippings and ephemera. Much of the reference material pertains to Barnard's collections of Medieval antiquities and his art projects. Daniel Williams also maintained extensive working notes in no known order. These are filed in their own series entitled "Working notes." The bulk of the notes was most likely written before Barnard's death and in conjunction with early drafts of the typescripts. These notes most notably include a questionnaire answered by Barnard as well as various annotations by Barnard and corrected fragments of the typescript. Also included is a folder of transcribed Barnard family correspondence.

There are eighteen identified but incomplete drafts and fragments of the typescript in the "Writing drafts" series. It is unclear as to the order of their creation or revision, or if there is a final version. Nearly all the drafts and remaining fragments have been annotated and edited by Williams and, in a few instances, by Barnard or his son, Monroe.

The last series, "Photographs," includes images of Barnard, various members of his family and other individuals, childhood residences, as well as many of his art projects.