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Martha Crary Halpern Research Papers

Identifier: HAL
Martha Crary Halpern was a serious scholar and actively involved in promoting public awareness of Philadelphia's historic houses situated in the city's vast park. As a member of the Museum's curatorial staff, Halpern served as the Assistant Curator for the Fairmount Park Houses. As this collection makes evident, she was thorough and well-organized in her research and record keeping. Photocopies of primary and secondary sources comprise the bulk of material. Correspondence, photographs, ephemera and draft writings are also interspersed throughout the collection. Organizing her papers by topic, Halpern developed a virtual encyclopedic reference of 18th and 19th century Americana. Subjects, further analyzed in multiple sub-topics, include specific historic houses and their furnishings, related individuals, Philadelphia history, slavery, religion, science and multiple aspects of domestic life. Other papers pertain more to Halpern's curatorial role and activities, documenting topics such as loans, exhibitions, and training materials for guides. There are also several draft writings.


  • TBD


Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research. Access to institutional records less than 10 years old is at the discretion of the Archivist.

Use Restrictions

The Martha Crary Halpern Research Papers are the physical property of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Archives. The Museum holds literary rights only for material created by Museum personnel or given to the Museum with such rights specifically assigned. For all other material, literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. Researchers are responsible for obtaining permission from rights holders for publication and for other purposes where stated.


31 linear feet


None available.

Acquisition and Custody Information

Gift of Howard Halpern, 2006.

Processing Information

These materials were arranged and described by Susan Anderson and Bertha Adams. Funded by a grant from The Institute of Museum and Library Services.


Guide to the Martha Crary Halpern Research Papers
Finding aid prepared by Susan Anderson and Bertha Adams
Language of description
Funded by a grant from The Institute of Museum and Library Services
Edition statement

Revision Statements

  • 6/12/2007: Bertha Adams: June 12, 2007

Repository Details

Part of the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Library and Archives Repository

Philadelphia Museum of Art
PO Box 7646
Philadelphia PA 19101-7646 United States