The Robert S. and Margaret A. Ames Collection of Illustrated Books

About the Collection

The Robert S. and Margaret A. Ames Collection was assembled over a thirty year period and built around three distinct but related ideas; the history of illustration, particularly nineteenth century books illustrated with woodcuts, wood or steel engravings or by lithography; the literature of travel and exploration, with a preference given to the North American continent; and pictorial representations of areas in which the Ames family lived before their arrival in Providence in 1970. The Ames Collection is notable for the degree to which it adds new titles to the Brown Library, the extent to which it complements other Brown holdings both in the John Hay Library and in Government Documents, and for its superb physical condition.

Bob Ames has been Vice-Chairman of the Friends of the Library for twenty five years and throughout that time he has been a valued supporter of the Library. Perhaps the most notable example of his good offices on behalf of the Library was the instrumental role he played, while Executive Vice President for Aerospace at Textron, Inc., in the donation of the massive archive of the Gorham Silver Company (then a Textron subsidiary) to the John Hay Library.

Margaret Ames, in addition to working with her husband in building the Ames Collection of Illustrated Books, is also a noted authority on, and collector of, early American needlework samplers.


          


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