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The Museum’s James D. Francis Art Library is a unique resource in the Tri-State, offering a wide range of books and other resources on the fine and decorative arts. As West Virginia’s only professionally staffed art library, its holdings offer a wealth of information to the community, and it now has approximately 28,500 volumes, in addition to an extensive collection of artists’ files and periodicals.

Visit the James D. Francis Art Library Catalog to see all the resources available for review at the Huntington Museum of Art.

Library materials are non-circulating and restricted to use in the library. While its primary mission is to support research on the Museum’s permanent collection and assist with exhibition planning, it also serves as an information center for local collectors and art lovers. Subject areas that are emphasized include American and European art, glass, Islamic art, firearms, silver, contemporary prints, and folk art. The collection of materials on glass is particularly notable, with approximately 1,000 volumes on the subject, as well as a number of historic trade journals and company catalogs.

The library is open by appointment and also accepts reference queries by telephone (304) 529-2701 or e-mail [email protected]. Appointments are required for research visits

Herman Palmer Dean Papers

Born in Wayne, West Virginia, on May 6, 1897, to Byron and Laura Osborn Dean, Herman Palmer Dean was known as a journalist, publisher, businessman, traveler and firearms expert and collector. As an avid hunter, Dean was knowledgeable about firearms, and began collecting them as a hobby.

Overall, the Herman P. Dean Firearms Collection holds nearly 400 items, and is widely considered to be one of the finest firearms collections in the country. In 1952, Dean loaned his firearms collection to Huntington Museum of Art (then, Huntington Galleries) and later donated it to the museum. The collection is open to the public, and an online finding aid (index) to the Herman P. Dean Papers is available.

Header: Emil Carlsen (American, b. Denmark, 1853-1932), Detail of The Heavens Are Telling, ca. 1918. Oil on canvas. Gift of Ruth Woods Dayton, 1967.1.47. Photo by John Spurlock. This artwork is featured in The Daywood Collection: Paintings & Sculptures exhibit through February, 11, 2024.