Papers of Dorothy Langford Brown

Scope and Content

This collection includes the following items: twelve sketchbooks by DB containing pencil, crayon and watercolour studies, early 20th century; prospectus for Crystal Palace Company's School of Art, Music and Literature, 1904; silver medal for modelling from life, Jul 1903; photograph of ? DB [taken by Stuart Black, photographer of Torquay], n.d. [? 1920s]; note and newscutting relating to SWA Exhibition 1904; three photographs of a Nativity scene, n.d. [20th century]; mounted photograph of painting by DB, 1903.

Administrative / Biographical History

Dorothy Langford Brown (nee Reed) (fl 1903-1940s), artist, was the daughter of a London lawyer and grew up in Upper Norwood, where she kept a house after her marriage. She trained in art at Crystal Palace Company's School for Art, Music and Literature during the early 1900s: this School was established as the Crystal Palace School of Art, Science and Literature in 1859, and was initially situated in the North Nave before moving to the South Wing in c 1901. It seems to have closed at some point before the First World War: as the archives of the Crystal Palace Company were destroyed in the fire of 1936, it is difficult to establish a fixed date of the closure. The Company also ran a School of Practical Engineering in the South Tower of the Crystal Palace site, as well as a School of Gardening. She also apparently trained at the Slade School of Art (1906-1908), and allegedly exhibited at the Royal Academy. She also exhibited at the Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool, and the New Gallery.

istrict councillor, poor law guardian and squire (from 1920). Unable to have children, the Browns adopted the folklorist Theo Brown (1914-1993) at the age of two, and encouraged her in developing interests in botany and art.

Access Information

Usual EUL arrangements apply.

Other Finding Aids

A rough handlist prepared by RAMM staff is available (not all items included in this list were deposited at EUL). Please ask the Archivist.

Archivist's Note

Description compiled by Charlotte Berry, Archivist, 22 April 2005, revised 3 June 2005 and encoded into EAD 3 June 2005.

Conditions Governing Use

Usual EUL restrictions apply.

Custodial History

Transferred from the Royal Albert Memorial Museum, Exeter, by the Curator of Art in 2005. Originally loaned to RAMM by Theo Brown during the 1990s.

Related Material

Papers of Brown's adopted daughter Theo are also held at Exeter University Library (EUL MS 105).


It is not known whether this collection has been used as the basis for publication.