Several artists and photographers have created artistic renderings
of Oberlin since its earliest days. The paintings, drawings, and
other framed items capture images of the town and campus. Some items
are more interpretive or abstract than others.
Scope and Content
This record group includes some framed photographs, and both originals
and prints of pencil sketches, woodblock prints, etchings, and drawings.
Four items exist documenting the campus of the Collegiate Institute
before 1850. They are: Thirza Skinner Peltons watercolor and stencil
of Tappan Hall, 1836; Margaret Drake Penfields oil on board of
Tappan Hall, ca. 1838-1841; H. Alonzo Peases watercolor and ink
titled A Partial View of Oberlin, 1838; and Henry Howes wood
engraving with color pencil of The Meetinghouse, Tappan Square
and Oberlin Institute Buildings, 1846.
An alphabetical inventory of framed items lists images, ca. 1840-1910,
of the City of Oberlin and of Oberlin College campus buildings.
Unframed items include more than 50 etchings, 1912-1936, by Julia
G. Severance (1877-1972) on postcards and for college calendars;
woodblock prints of Finney Chapel and of the Memorial Arch, 1933,
by Edward D. McDowell; and six pencil sketches of Oberlin buildings
completed in 1987 by Ivy E. Starr (b. 1909), the mother of President
S. Frederick Starr. Kate Emlen Chamberlin executed a color print
of Finney Chapel, which was used on the invitation for the inauguration
of President Nancy S. Dye, in 1994. Also from 1994 are copies of
Paul B. Arnolds four drawings of The Hickories, the Lorain County
Historical Society building, located at 509 Washington Ave., Elyria,
The work of Canadian architect Julian S. Smith (A.B. 1969) appears
in both the framed and unframed categories of drawings. He completed
22 original drawings and prints of campus buildings, ca. 1970, perhaps
for the alumni office. Smiths design for the Oberlin Bandstand
Competition was selected in 1985; the Clark Bandstand was erected
in 1987. Drawings for this designwhich include a site plan, a
location plan, a cross section, two elevations, and a rendering
of the final structureare amongst the archives framed drawings.