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Harry Smith papers, 1888-2010, bulk 1987-1990

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Smith (Harry) papers
Series VIII Collections, circa 1888- circa 1990, undated 138.17 Linear Feet (191 boxes)
Comprising a selection of the realia that Smith collected over many years, this series consists of ceramics, toys, hand made objects from various cultural communities (folk art), and printed material. The largest group of objects is the paper airplanes.
Arrangement
Arranged in alphabetical order.
box
144 Autograph books, 1928-1942 4 items
box
145-146 Canes, undated 2 items
box
147-156 Ceramics, circa 1950-circa 1990 57 items
Including numerous chopstick rests that incorporate figures such as fish, boats, and fruit, and other figural ceramics in the form of animals, vegetables, and household items.
box
157-178 Commercial toys, circa 1940-circa 1990 54 items
Including various wind-up toys in metal or plastic, such as a Donald Duck, a Chinese lion dog, a Russian doll, and an Educational Phone House. There are also various kinds of manipulable toys, such as a metal alligator clicker, a plastic tree, plastic cars, a plastic hamburger yo-yo, a plastic pinwheel, and a wooden puzzle.
box
179-183 Eggs, plain/mounted, undated 32 items
Mounted on cardboard tubes or painted glue bottles.
Folk Art, undated
The items classified under the "Folk Art" heading are handmade traditional items from various cultural communities. There is no evidence that Harry Smith himself used this category, but the Harry Smith Archives used it, and the cataloger has continued its usage as a way of distinguishing the handmade from the mass produced items in the Realia collections.
box
184-190 Clay, undated 22 items
Including doll heads, horses, fish, birds, and other animals in white, black, tan, or red, with or without spots.
box
191-192 Eggs, Ukrainian, undated
Including items of wood, alabaster, wax, and actual egg, that have been decorated with paint, incised, or set with beads, in a range of designs, from the geometric to the figurative.
box
193-204 Fiber, undated 16 items
Including items from China, India, Himalaya, Senegal and Russia, such as woven shoes, cloth ornaments, straw ducks, and fabric.
box
205 Glass, undated 4 items
Including a reindeer, ram, bull and blue bird.
box
206 Jewelry, undated 3 items
Comprising necklaces made of seed and wood.
box
207-220 Masks, undated 17 items
Paper mache, from India and China.
box
221-222 Metal, undated 2 items
A scorpion stand and a balance toy, both from India.
box
223 Paper, 2 items
Comprising origami peacocks.
box
224 Stone, undated 1 item
A single object portraying gods from India.
box
225-260 Wood, undated 55 items
Including Russian mechanical animal toys; bowls or other house ware from Scandinavia or elsewhere in the shape of fish or birds; Russian nesting dolls or icons; and painted shrines or animals from India.
box
261 Glass box, commercial, undated 1 theaters
box
262-264 Gourds, undated 48 items
box
265 Leaves, undated
box
266-294 Paper airplanes, 1961-1990, undated 260 items
Presumably only a portion of the total number of found paper airplanes Harry Smith collected over his lifetime, this nonetheless representative assortment comprises airplanes of various sizes made from a range of ephemera, including school math homework, Hotel Albert stationary, a religious tract, a Betty Crocker card, a Sisterhood newsletter, and a Manhattan telephone book cover. They bear the dates on which they were found and their locations. This collection was donated to Harry Smith Archives from Smithsonian Air and Space Museum.
flatfile
2**-4** Posters, circa 1964-1983, undated 3 items
box
295-296 Printed material, bound, 1888-1987 14 items
Including spiritual guidance books, such as the Cabala, Dewitt's Horoscopes, Dr. Pierce's Books of Fortune, and the Flipbook of Revelations; found high school yearbooks, sales catalogs, and instructional books about gardening, cooking, and sewing.
box
297 String figure, mounted, undated 1 item
box
298-316 Tarot and playing cards, circa 1970-1990 181 items
Cards decks produced in America, France, and Italy, ranging from divinatory decks to tarot decks with motifs such as the Golden Dawn, the Tree of Life, Cat People, and Wonderland. Playing cards include classics such as Old Maid, Hearts, and Go Fish, as wells as Collectible decks with motifs such as the Iran Contra scandal or Country music.
box
317-334 Varia, undated
One-of-a-kind items that do not fit into the collection's other categories, including a miniature crate filled with bubblegum oranges, seven assorted buttons, two swim goggles, a pink cloth dice ornament, Harry Smith's fingernail, a stethoscope, a seaman's cap, and a plastic CD organizer.


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