Marcus Whiffen - Design and the Arts Library Collections

Papers: 1930s-1990s
15 boxes, 7 linear feet

Marcus Whiffen was born in Herefordshire, England, in 1916. He graduated BA at the University of Cambridge in 1937 and completed his MA at the same institution in 1946. The career in which he established an international reputation as a scholar in the field of architectural history began on the staff of Architect & Building News (London) in 1937. From 1946-1952, he was Assistant Editor for the Architectural Review (London). After arriving in the United States in 1952, he held lecturer positions at Massachusetts Institute of Technology and then at the University of Texas before becoming Architectural Historian at Colonial Williamsburg (1954-1959). Professor Whiffen was associated with Arizona State University in various positions from 1960 until his death in February, 2002.

During his long career Marcus Whiffen has authored many books and articles on British and American architecture. Some of his published works are: Stuart and Georgian Churches: The Architecture of the Church of England Outside London (1948): American Architecture Since 1780: A guide to the Styles (1969,1992); and Pueblo Deco: The Art Deco Architecture of the Southwest with Carla Breeze (1984). In addition he served as editor of the Journal of Architectural Education 1962-67, and editor of Triglyph: A Southwestern Journal of Architecture and Environmental Design, 1984-90.

This collection consists primarily of correspondence, photographs, clippings, and other printed materials. The extensive correspondence series documents Whiffen’s diverse activities as architectural historian, journalist, and educator. Of particular import is correspondence with noted architectural historians Nicholas Pevsner and Henry-Russell Hitchcock. Files of correspondence with fellow scholar Frederick Koeper in developing the jointly authored book, American Architecture, 1607-1976, are also included within the holding. Whiffen’s professional editorial experience is documented in files of correspondence regarding the architectural publications, Triglyph, and Journal of Architectural Education. The collection includes an extensive holding of photographs used in Marcus Whiffen’s prominent work, American Architecture Since 1780: A Guide to the Styles.

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