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Special Collections: Guide to the Vincent A. Hartgen Papers

Arranged and described by Brenda Howitson Steeves
April 2008

Collection title: Vincent A. Hartgen Papers
Collection number: MS 1457
Dates of collection:
Size of collection: 7 boxes


Vincent A. Hartgen was an artist, educator and museum director. He was born in Reading, Pennsylvania, on January 10, 1914, the son of William J. and Jane Hadfield Hartgen. He received a bachelor of fine arts degree in 1940 and a master’s degree in fine arts in 1941, both from the University of Pennsylvania. After serving with the U.S. Army from 1942-1945, he came to the University of Maine in 1946 as head of the newly formed art department. Over the next 37 years, Professor Hartgen built the department, extended the variety of courses, and taught some 10,000 students, helping them to understand and appreciate art. As curator of the university art collection, he also added greatly to its holdings, organized traveling exhibits to secondary schools in the state, and hung works of art in offices and public spaces on the university’s campus. Hartgen retired from the university in 1983 as the John Homer Huddilston Professor of Art and was awarded an honorary doctorate of letters in 1991.

Professor Hartgen painted and sketched extensively throughout his career, completing over 3500 works in watercolor and pen and ink. He had more than 75 one-man shows in addition to his annual lawn show at his home in Orono. His works are represented in the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, the Brooks Memorial Museum in Memphis, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Houston, and the Walker Art Institute in Minneapolis, among many others. He also served on the Maine Arts Commission and was a member of the Maine Coast Artists and the Haystack Mountain School of Crafts.

Vincent Hartgen married Frances Lubanda, whom he had met in high school, in 1940. Their twin sons, David and Stephen, were born in 1944. Professor Hartgen died on November 27, 2002.

Scope and Content Note

The collection contains the personal papers of Vincent A. Hartgen, including correspondence, subject files, and photographs.

The collection begins with Hartgen’s incoming and outgoing correspondence arranged alphabetically by correspondent. It is followed by files about exhibits, art shows, galleries, etc.; the folder names are those used by Hartgen. The large number of photographs found in the collection are both of Hartgen himself engaged in various activities, photographs of his summer art shows and other exhibits, and photographs of various of his paintings and drawings. A small number of folders of his notes for several art courses he taught as well as books that contain illustrations of his paintings finish out the collection.

Contents of Boxes

Box 1


1 Correspondence: A
2 Correspondence: Archives of American Art (N.E. Center of the Archives)
3 Art Today
4 Correspondence: B
5 George Binet Correspondence
6 Correspondence: C
7 Correspondence: D
8 Correspondence: E
9 Correspondence: Eitzel, Walter
10 Encore: music disks
11 Correspondence: F
12 Correspondence: Fabri, Ralph
13 Correspondence: Fitzgerald, Clark
14 Correspondence: Freeman, Kathryn
15 Correspondence: G
16 Correspondence: Greaver, Harry
17 Correspondence: Greenleaf, Ken
18 Correspondence: H
19 Correspondence: Hebron Academy. Contributions- Hebron area
20 Hartgen, David
21 Hartgen, Stephen
22 Correspondence: Homburger
23 Correspondence: Huntington, Chris
24 Correspondence: Hutchins, Curtis
25 Correspondence: Interore Corp., B.D. Cooper
26 Correspondence: International Theatre Comm., U.S. National Comm. for UNESCO
27 Correspondence: I - J - K

Box 2


1 Correspondence: L
2 Correspondence: M
3 Correspondence: Muir, Emily
4 Correspondence: N - O
5 Correspondence: P - Q
6 Correspondence: Peirce, Waldo
7-8 Correspondence: R - S
9 Correspondence: Roten, Ferdinand
10 Correspondence: Schoneberg, S.C.
11 Correspondence: Seligmann, Herbert J.
12-13 Correspondence: Spatz, Donald
14 Correspondence: Sprinchorn, Carl
15 Correspondence: T - U - V
16 Correspondence: Thon, William
17 Photos: Walas, Jack
18 Correspondence: W - X - Y - Z
19 Alternate energy show
20-21 American Artists Group, Inc.

Box 3


1 Art Building UMO
2 Art classes, evening
3 Art in estate
4 Aucocisco Gallery
5 Audubon Artists
5a Baltimore exhibits, 1940s
6 L.C. Bates Museum
7 Peladeau, Marius (Bates Museum)
8 Berresford
9 Bose Corp.
10 Boston Museum of Fine Arts
11 Central Place Gallery - Oct. 1989
12 Chase Gallery
13 Chocolate Church - Bath
14 Colby College
15 Dept. of State - Art in the Embassies program
16 Doll & Richards
17 Down East Gallery - Bethesda, Maryland
18 Richard Eaton
19 Exhibits - Collections
20 Farnsworth Art Museum - Rockland, Maine
21 Galleries - artists - Maine
22 G. Washington University
23 Hartgen Art History Travel Awards
24 Hartgen at 75
24a Hartgen at 75 photographs
25-26 Hartgen at 80 - original letters for catalog
27 Hartgen - awards
28 Hartgen - awards, etc.
29 Hartgen collection
30 Hartgen - hands
31-32 Hartgen - retirement

Box 4


1 Hartgen - retirement cont.
1a Hartgen talk ’96
2 Hartgen: UMaine Distinguished Professor Award
3 Eulogies for Dad
4 Huntington Travel 1939
5 Intown Art Gallery - Bangor
6 Johns Hopkins Medical Newsletter: Health after 50
7 Kalamazoo Institute 1972
8 King’s College, 1971 - Wilkes-Barre, PA
9 Mailing lists: conferences and institutes, etc.
10 Maine Alliance
11 Maine Art Gallery - Wiscasset
12 Maine Arts Commission
13 Maine Coast Artists
14 Maine Coast Artists into the 21st century
15 Maine Percent for Art program
16 Mason, Wally - UMO art director
17 MSS, 1922-1923
18 National Museum of American Art
19 New Hampshire Art Gallery
20 Robert H. Newall
21 Orono Public Library
22-23 Patrons of the Arts
24 Penn MFA Annual Exhibition 1992
25 University of Pennsylvania - School of Fine Arts
26 Photographs of Vincent Hartgen, 1937-ca. 2000
27-30 Photographs of Hartgen, undated
31 Photographs of summer art show, 1959, 1960, 1964-1967, 1971
32 Photographs of summer art show, 1973, 1974

Box 5


1 Photographs of summer art show, 1975, undated
2 Photographs of Anna Hyatt Huntington sculpture exhibit, 1938(?)
3 Photographs of Berenice Abbott exhibit, 1971
4-5 Photographs of Hartgen paintings by title, A-W
6-7 Photographs of unidentified Hartgen paintings
8 Miscellaneous photographs
9 Negatives, contact prints
10 Portland Museum - Maine
11 Rockport Publishers
12 Round Top Center - Damariscotta, Maine
13 Samples of exhibit catalogs, greeting cards, etc.
14 Seligmann, Herbert J. A South Carolina Independent of the 1880’s: J. Hendrix McLane
15 Speedball Co.
16 State House Exhibition
17 Veilleux, Tom - gallery
18 Who’s Who in America
19 Art Masterpieces in Europe, complete sets (class notes)
20 CSF 10 Masterpieces of Art in Europe (class notes)
21 Early Christian - Gothic (class notes)
22 Greek - Roman (class notes)
23 Prehistoric - Egypt - Near East (class notes)
24 Principles of art (class notes)
25 Renaissance - Baroque other than Italy (class notes)
26 Renaissance - Italy (class notes)
27-28 Miscellaneous class notes
29 Outlines - courses
30 Study guides
31-32 University of Maine Art Museum
33 University of Maine Farm/Home Museum
34 University of Maine Foundation

Box 6


1 UMO - Huddilstons
2 Machias - University of Maine
3 UMO - Maine Center for the Arts
4 University of Maine Portland Centre ’96
5 UMO - Special Collections
6 University of Maine system
7 Telephone directory, 1994-1995, U. of Maine (cover by Hartgen)
8 100 Watercolor Techniques by Norman Kent
9 Creative Seascape Painting by Edward Betts
10 Watercolor Bold and Free by Lawrence C. Goldsmith

Box 7


1 Maine artist bookmark series
2 Note cards designed by Hartgen
3-5 Examples of American Artists Group cards


Finding Aids for selected manuscript collections in the Special Collections Department at Fogler Library are accessible online in URSUS, in a browsable Guide to Manuscript Collections. Please contact Special Collections at or (207) 581-1686 for further information.

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Special Collections Staff: | Revised: 03/18/2015
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