Avery Drawings & Archives Collections
 

Olive Emslie papers, 1951-1978

Summary Information

Abstract

Olive Emslie was an interior designer who worked on projects for various shopping centers and stores in America and Canada from the 1950s to the early 1970s. The collection consists of professional papers, interior renderings, floor plans, sign designs, and project photographs.

At a Glance

Bib ID 8501483 View CLIO record
Creator(s) Emslie, Olive
Title Olive Emslie papers, 1951-1978
Physical Description 2 document boxes; 4 folders (flat-file); 1 print box
Language(s) English .
Access

This collection is available for use by appointment in the Department of Drawings & Archives, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University. For further information and to make an appointment, please email avery-drawings@library.columbia.edu.

Arrangement

Arrangement

This collection is arranged in four series: Professional Papers, Project Records, Project Samples, and Other Papers.

Description

Scope and Content

The Olive Emslie papers documents the interior designer's career and major projects. The collection consists of professional papers, interior renderings, floor plans, sign designs, and project photographs.

Series I: Professional Papers includes Emslie's resume, correspondence, a magazine and newspaper clipping, and an award.

Series II: Project Records is mostly devoted to three major commissions: the two Pennsylvania Kaufmann's stores in Monroeville and Pittsburgh along with the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The materials include floor plans and specifications, graphic studies, designs for signs, invoices, contracts, and conference reports for various projects. There are also interior renderings of numerous departments in the Kaufmann's stores, many of which are intricate and colorfully drawn with pencil and color samples. Although the bulk of the material belongs to the Kaufmann's store and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, there are also folders for other smaller projects, such as the Robert Simpson Co. Ltd., G. Fox & Co. Inc., and Columbia University's "Man's Right to Knowledge" campaign for their bicentennial. The Project Records series also includes Project Sample Boards, which include color and black & white photographs and images from various projects meant as a portfolio for presentation purposes, all backed on cardboard.

Series III: Other Papers/Materials includes a small box of architectural tools and Emslie's husband's architectural degree and certificate.

  • Series I: Professional Papers

    includes Emslie's resume, correspondence, a magazine and newspaper clipping, and an award.

  • Series II: Project Records

    is mostly devoted to three major commissions: the two Pennsylvania Kaufmann's stores in Monroeville and Pittsburgh along with the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The materials include floor plans and specifications, graphic studies, designs for signs, invoices, contracts, and conference reports for various projects. There are also interior renderings of numerous departments in the Kaufmann's stores, many of which are intricate and colorfully drawn with pencil and color samples. Although the bulk of the material belongs to the Kaufmann's store and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, there are also folders for other smaller projects, such as the Robert Simpson Co. Ltd., G. Fox & Co. Inc., and Columbia University's "Man's Right to Knowledge" campaign for their bicentennial. The Project Records series also includes Project Sample Boards, which include color and black & white photographs and images from various projects meant as a portfolio for presentation purposes, all backed on cardboard.

  • Series III: Other Papers/Materials

    includes a small box of architectural tools and Emslie's husband's architectural degree and certificate.

Publication Date

1951-1978

Using the Collection

Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library

Restrictions on Access

This collection is available for use by appointment in the Department of Drawings & Archives, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University. For further information and to make an appointment, please email avery-drawings@library.columbia.edu.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

Permission to publish must be obtained in writing from the Director, Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, Columbia University, 1172 Amsterdam Ave., MC 0301, New York, NY 10027.

Preferred Citation

Olive Emslie papers, 1951-1978. Department of Drawings & Archives, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library, Columbia University.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Source of acquisition--Toni Zwickut. Method of acquisition--Donated;; Accession number--1996.021.

About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Columbia University Libraries, Avery Architectural and Fine Arts Library

Processing Information

Processed; Rihoko Ueno 2011.

Revision Description

2011-03-01 File created.

2019-05-20 EAD was imported spring 2019 as part of the ArchivesSpace Phase II migration.

Subject Headings

The subject headings listed below are found in this collection. Links below allow searches at Columbia University through the Archival Collections Portal and through CLIO, the catalog for Columbia University Libraries, as well as ArchiveGRID, a catalog that allows users to search the holdings of multiple research libraries and archives.

All links open new windows.

Subject

Heading "CUL Archives:"
"Portal"
"CUL Collections:"
"CLIO"
"Nat'l / Int'l Archives:"
"ArchivedGRID"
Architecture -- United States -- Designs and plans Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Department stores -- Pennsylvania Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Design -- United States -- History -- 20th century Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Emslie, Olive Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Interior decoration -- United States -- History -- 20th century Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Interior decorators -- United States Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, N.Y.) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Victor Gruen Associates Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID

History / Biographical Note

Biographical / Historical

Olive Emslie was an interior designer who worked on projects for various shopping centers and stores in America and Canada from the 1950s to the early 1970s. Emslie received a bachelor's degree in architecture from Cornell University and worked for various architectural and design firms, such as Levy and Levy, Ketchum Gina and Sharp, and Victor Gruen Associates, before opening her own practice in 1966.

Emslie also owned a patent for her design of a fountain pen from her time as a product designer at Van Doren, Knowland and Schaldermundt. Noteworthy projects include the planning and designing of different floors of two Kaufmann's stores in Pennsylvania - Pittsburgh and Monroeville - as well as Color Print Shop of NY's Metropolitan Museum of Art.

After clicking 'Submit Request', users will login with their UNI and password (Columbia affiliates) or their special collections account (external users). Appointments are required and will be arranged according to each individual repository's policy.


Series I: Professional Papers

includes Emslie's resume, correspondence, a magazine and newspaper clipping, and an award.



Box 01 Folder 01 Resume, 1972



Box 01 Folder 02 Ketchum, Gina & Sharp, Architects C.V., 1952

Brief C.V. for all the architects at Ketchum, Gina & Sharp architecture firm, where Emslie worked, along with a list of commissions.



Box 01 Folder 03 Correspondence, 1952-1996

Includes assorted correspondence, along with a telegram and one pay order for a contract.



Box 01 Folder 04 Publicity, 1952-1964

Includes magazine and newspaper article mentioning Olive Emslie's work in Yorkdale Shopping Centre in North York, Canada and A.J. Frieman Ltd in Ottawa.



Box 01 Folder 05 Award, 1954

Small commemorative plaque from Columbia University in "Bicentennial Year 1954" for her work on "Man's Right to Knowledge" commission.

Series II: Project Records

is mostly devoted to three major commissions: the two Pennsylvania Kaufmann's stores in Monroeville and Pittsburgh along with the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The materials include floor plans and specifications, graphic studies, designs for signs, invoices, contracts, and conference reports for various projects. There are also interior renderings of numerous departments in the Kaufmann's stores, many of which are intricate and colorfully drawn with pencil and color samples. Although the bulk of the material belongs to the Kaufmann's store and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, there are also folders for other smaller projects, such as the Robert Simpson Co. Ltd., G. Fox & Co. Inc., and Columbia University's "Man's Right to Knowledge" campaign for their bicentennial. The Project Records series also includes Project Sample Boards, which include color and black & white photographs and images from various projects meant as a portfolio for presentation purposes, all backed on cardboard.


Subseries 1: Other Project



Box 01 Folder 06 A. J. Frieman Ltd. (Ottawa, Canda), 1951

2 floor plans.



Box 01 Folder 07 Columbia University, 1954

Includes photographic proofs for "Man's Right to Knowledge and the Free Use Thereof" commission for Columbia University's Bicentennial Anniversary along with one copy of final booklet and a page of pencil notes for layout.



Box 01 Folder 08 Hochschild Kohn Mall (Baltimore, MD), 1958

1 blue line print of mall elevation for Hochschild Kohn, Harundale.



Box 01 Folder 09 G. Fox & Co., Inc. (Hartford, CT), 1969

1 album of fabric samples and wallpaper, plus correspondence and notes for G. Fox & Co., Inc.



Drawer 204 Folder 04 G. Fox & Co., Inc. (Hartford, CT), 1965-1969

24 blue line floor plans.



Oversize 01 Project Samples - Boards, 1958-1970

Color as well as black and white photographs and images of various projects, including A.J Frieman's, Ottawa, Canada; Hochschild Kohn, Baltimore, MD; The Robert Simpson Co., Toronto, Canda; Kaufmann's, Pittsburgh, PA.



Drawer 204 Folder 01 The Robert Simpson Co. Ltd

4 blue line prints with color pencil and color samples; type: interior renderings of various departments.


Subseries 2: Monroeville Kaufmann's



Box 02 Folder 01 Correspondence, 1968-1969

Regarding the main level/first floor of Monroeville Kaufmann's store.



Box 02 Folder 02 Conference Reports, 1968

On the main level/first floor of Monroeville Kaufmann's store.



Box 02 Folder 03 Invoices, 1968

For work on main level of Monroeville Kaufmann's store; includes small ledger book listing expenses.



Box 02 Folder 04 Contract, 1968

contract for work on main level of Monroeville Kaufmann's store.



Box 02 Folder 05 Photographs, 1968

29 black and white photographs of each department on main level of Monroeville Kaufmann's; each photo numbered and corresponds to blue line prints of main level floor plans.



Box 02 Folder 06 First Floor Plans (1 of 4), 1968

9 blue line prints; 1 pencil on trace; floor plans for departments on main level/first floor of Monroeville Kaufmann's.



Box 02 Folder 07 First Floor Plans (2 of 4), 1968

12 blue line print; floor plans for departments on main level/first floor of Monroeville Kaufmann's.



Box 02 Folder 08 First Floor Plans (3 of 4), 1968

12 blue line print; floor plans for departments on main level/first floor of Monroeville Kaufmann's.



Drawer 204 Folder 03 First Floor Plans (4 of 4), 1968

1 blue line print of ceiling and lighting plan for the main level/first floor of Monroeville Kaufmann's.



Box 02 Folder 09 Bidding Proposal for Signage, 1968

Krimstock Brothers Corporation proposal bidding on the signing for the Monroeville Kaufmann's store; includes Emslie's signage designs on trace paper.



Drawer 204 Folder 02 Graphic Studies, 1968

16 graphic studies and signage designs for various departments.



Box 02 Folder 10 Sign Designs, 1967-1969

Pencil on trace drawings numbered 1-69, with numerous unnumbered pages of designs and drafts; includes index referencing design numbers and revisions.



Box 02 Folder 11 Miscellaneous Notes, 1968

5 pencil on trace; 9 blue line prints; miscellaneous notes and designs for cabinetwork and floor plans.



Box 02 Folder 12 Set of Interior Renderings and Department Plans with Master Floor Plan, 1968

33 blue line prints with color pencil and color samples; interior renderings and floor plans for the individual departments of the Monroeville Kaufmann's main; each rendering and floor plan is numbered on the bottom corner of paper's reverse side; includes a master plan of the entire main floor with numbers corresponding to the renderings and floor plans (media: brown line print with pencil).


Subseries 3: Pittsburgh Kaufmann's



Box 01 Folder 10 Interior Renderings and Signage, 1964

Interior drawings with color pencil on trace paper of various departments on third floor of Kaufmann's and designs for signage.



Box 01 Folder 11 Third Floor Design Packet, 1964

Designs for signage as well as color and wallpaper samples for third floor of Pittsburgh Kaufmann's.



Box 01 Folder 12 Travel Expenses Book, 1964

Spiral-bound notebook listing travel expenses.



Box 01 Folder 13 Correspondence and Expense Reports, 1964

Expense reports and correspondence found in a folder labeled "1964 Emslie-Baldon" (Robert Baldon of Associated Store Designers, a NY design firm where Emslie worked); also includes several black and white photos of Pittsburgh Kaufmann's interior.



Box 01 Folder 14 Third Floor Plans, 1963-1964

Blue line floor and fixture plans for various sections (Boys, Girls, Infant Furniture, Teens, etc.).



Box 01 Folder 15 Fifth Floor Drawings, 1967

26 pencil drawings on trace paper; type: cabinetwork and interiors of departments on fifth floor and one drawing of fitting rooms



Box 01 Folder 16 Plane Tickets, 1967



Box 01 Folder 17 Correspondence, 1967

Regarding the fifth floor of Pittsburgh Kaufmann's store.



Box 01 Folder 18 Conference Reports, 1967

Regarding the fifth floor of Pittsburgh Kaufmann's store.



Box 01 Folder 19 Contract, 1966-1967

For the fifth floor of Pittsburgh Kaufmann's store.



Box 01 Folder 20 Invoices, 1967

For work on the fifth floor of Pittsburgh Kaufmann's store.



Box 01 Folder 21 Fifth Floor Graphic Study, 1967

1 trace paper graphic study of peacock feather for baseboard; 1 watercolor on paper version of the same pattern.



Box 01 Folder 22 Fifth Floor Plans, 1967

includes blue line preliminary studies and floor plans for various sections - Women's Dresses, Sportswear, Maternity Shop, Junior Accessories, etc. - on the fifth floor of the Pittsburgh Kaufmann's store



Box 01 Folder 23 Fifth Floor Design Packet, 1967

packet labeled on first page "5th FL Kaufmann's Pittsburgh, PA Jan 1967 - Sept 6 (last trip) complete," includes color and fabric samples for various sections


Subseries 4: Metropolitan Museum of Art



Box 02 Folder 13 Specifications, 1971

2 copies of specifications for cabinet work & millwork as well as electrical work; one copy includes detailed blue line prints of cabinetwork.



Box 02 Folder 14 Information Packet, 1971

Includes correspondence, notes, floor plans, and cabinetwork dimensions.



Box 02 Folder 15 Print Department Drawings Set, 1976

18 blue line print drawings of Metropolitan Museum of Art's Print Department; includes three paint samples of Print shop ceiling and wall.



Box 02 Folder 16 First Floor Plan, 1978

1 drawing.



Box 02 Folder 17 Sales Desk and Office, 1971

Design plans and specifications on trace paper for Metropolitan Museum of Art sales desk and sales office.



Box 02 Folder 18 Book Shop Offices, 1971

Floor plans and specifications on trace for Metropolitan Museum of Art book shop offices.



Box 02 Folder 19 Print Shop Relocation, 1978

Blue line prints and pencil on trace drawings.



Box 02 Folder 20 Correspondence, 1972-1978



Box 02 Folder 21 Slide Display, 1973



Box 02 Folder 22 Notes, 1978-1979

Series III: Other Papers/Materials

includes a small box of architectural tools and Emslie's husband's architectural degree and certificate.



Box 02 Folder 23 Architectural Tools



Roll A056.04 Diplomas of Murray Sim Emslie (Olive Emslie's husband)

Architectural degree and certificate.