Scope and Contents
Title: Henry Chapman Ford Papers
Identifier/Call Number: MS.737
Autry National Center, Braun Research Library
Language of Material:
0.1 linear feet
Date: circa 1890
Henry Chapman Ford was born 1828 August 6 in Livonia, New York and died 1894 February 27 in Santa Barbara, California. During
the 1860s, Ford served in the American Civil War, became Chicago’s first landscape painter, and helped found the Chicago Academy
of Design. He became most famous for his series of etchings featuring all of the twenty-one mission sites in California. In
1883 he published
Etchings of the Franciscan Missions of California
and, in 1893, exhibited these etchings at the Chicago World's Fair. The
Henry Chapman Ford Papers
contain a notebook, loose pages of notes, and pencil sketches- all of which were created circa 1890. The materials relate
to California missions and their surrounding areas, landmarks, and flora.
Ford, Henry Chapman, 1828-1894
After the death of Henry Chapman Ford in 1894, his wife Helen Ford became the custodian of these materials. She later married
F.H. Sloan. Helen Ford died in 1911 March 2. F.H. Sloan sold these materials along with other works by H.C. Ford to Dawson’s
Bookshop in 1911 July 28. They were purchased by Judge Grant Jackson on 1918 May 10. Jackson donated the items to the Southwest
Museum Library in 1925 April.
Neuerburg, Norman . "Henry Chapman Ford, painter of early California."
Ventura County Historical Society Quarterly, Volume 41, 1996.
Scope and Contents
This collection contains a notebook, loose pages of notes, and pencil sketches made by Henry Chapman Ford circa 1890. The
notebook consists of hand-written essays from 1888-1889.
The notebook essays, notes and pencil sketches relate to California missions, specifically Mission San Juan Capistrano, Santa
Barbara Mission, San Fernando, Rey de España, San Diego Mission, and Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa. The notebook also
includes notes about the Missions' surrounding areas, landmarks, and flora.
Henry Chapman Ford Papers, circa 1890, Braun Research Library Collection, Autry National Center, Los Angeles; MS.737.
Processed by Library staff before 1981. Finding aid completed by Holly Rose Larson, NHPRC Processing Archivist, 2012 November
16, made possible through grant funding from the National Historical Publications and Records Commissions (NHPRC).
Bequest by Judge Grant Jackson, 1925 April.
Copyright has not been assigned to the Autry National Center. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts
must be submitted in writing to the Autry Archivist. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Autry National Center
as the custodian of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must
also be obtained by the reader.
Collection is open for research. Appointments to view materials are required. To make an appointment please visit http://theautry.org/research/research-rules-and-application
or contact library staff at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Henry Chapman Ford was born 1828 August 6 in Livonia, New York and died 1894 February 27 in Santa Barbara, California. Santa
Barbara, California. Ford served in the American Civil War, became Chicago’s first landscape painter, and helped found the
Chicago Academy of Design. He became most famous for his series of etchings featuring all of the twenty-one mission sites
in California. In 1883 he published
Etchings of the Franciscan Missions of California and, in 1893, exhibited these etchings at the Chicago World's Fair.
Ford studied art in Paris, France and Florence, Italy from 1857 to 1860. He returned to New York in 1861 and shortly thereafter
enlisted in the United States military and was attached to a brigade stationed in New Mexico during the American Civil War.
He served for one year and was discharged due to a physical disability. After his discharge from the military, Ford moved
to Chicago, Illinois where he became the city’s first professional landscape painter. He met his wife Helen Webster Sackett
in 1865 and they married that same year on October 18.
In 1867, Ford helped found the Chicago Academy of Design, which was formally incorporated in 1869. Ford served first as vice-president
and then president for the Academy from 1869-1873. Most of his early work was destroyed when the Academy burned in 1871.
Health problems prompted Ford and his wife to move to milder climates. He settled in Santa Barbara, California in 1875. A
year later he became one of the founders of the Santa Barbara Society of Natural History. Ford taught and painted at his studio
in Santa Barbara until his death.
Subjects and Indexing Terms
California, Southern -- Description and travel
Mission San Juan Capistrano
Mission San Luis Obispo de Tolosa (San Luis Obispo, Calif.)
Missions -- California
Plants -- California, Southern
San Diego Mission
San Fernando, Rey de España (Mission : San Fernando, Calif.)
Santa Barbara Mission