J. B. Lankes (1915-2010), the son of local woodcut artist J. J. Lankes (1884-1960) and Edee Bartlett (1885-1958) has bequeathed to the Rare Book Room of the B&ECPL over 1,000 letters that he had inherited from his famous father. Containing both personal and business-related correspondence, the collection is currently being processed by staff and will greatly enhance our Lankes Collection of block prints, etchings, tools and other miscellanea. Recipients and senders include local artists and friends William j. Schwanekamp and Arthur Kowalski, and internationally renowned artists Charles Burchfield and Dard Hunter, the American authority on printing and papermaking.
Lankes and Kowalski often corresponded using blank papers they collected with business letterheads, a necessary economy at the time. They lightheartedly discuss daily events, other artists and the business of the Saturday Sketch Club, which Lankes formed in 1910. Shown here are illustrated envelopes from letters between Lankes and Kowalski, as well as a three-page letter from Schwanekamp (or Schwane as he was known to his friends) on three different letterheads.
The collection is a wonderful new addition to the treasures in the Rare Book Room.