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About the Collection
Albert A. Anderson, Jr., and Evelynn M. Ellis Art Education Collection
The production of drawing manuals designed specifically for children was a goal of even the earliest authors and publishers. Toward the middle of the 19th century, new forms of drawing manuals began to appear. One of the most important of these was unbound drawing cards, issued in packets with specific instructions for their use. While the cards may have been used initially for home recreational purposes (for example, as a constructive Sunday activity), they soon found their way into the schools, primarily because of their capacity to provide drawing experiences for many children simultaneously and at very low cost. Because they were popular, many such cards by various publishers came on the market. But while they were once quite common, they were subject to being lost, damaged, or mixed with cards from other sets, and as a result, complete sets are today very scarce. They were designed to be used frequently and they were, often to the point of destruction. There simply are not many left. Those that survive, however, provide much insight into 19th-century life.
The digital collection reproduces selected examples of drawing cards from among those held in the Anderson-Ellis Art Education Collection.
- The National Art Education Association records
- Pennsylvania Art Education Association records
- Pennsylvania Alliance for Arts Education records
- Viktor Lowenfeld Papers
- Harold J. McWhinnie Papers
- Alice M. Schwartz Papers
- Dale B. Harris Papers
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