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Indiana State Library

Library > Collections > Rare Books & Manuscripts > Finding Aid Index > Polley, Frederick Polley, Frederick

Frederick Polley Drawings Collection
1 box, 25 folders

Manuscript & Rare Books Division
Indiana State Library

Processed by: Rusti L. Keen, September 2010


Biographical Note

Born on August 15, 1875, in Union City, Indiana, Frederick Polley was a painter, etcher, printmaker, writer, and teacher. A graduate of Indiana University, he studied at the Corcoran Art School in Washington, D.C., in Provincetown, Massachusetts under James Hopkins, and at the Herron School of Art in Indianapolis, IN under William Forsyth. Polley later taught art at the Herron School of Art as well as the Arsenal Technical High School, both in Indianapolis. He is well known for his weekly features in the Indianapolis Star highlighting hundreds of Indiana state landmarks as well as popular attractions throughout the country. These features were sometimes included in national magazines such as Ladies’ Home Journal and Esquire. He also authored two books, Our America and Historic Churches in America, both of which included his illustrations. Polley had work featured in art shows by the Hoosier Salon, the Irvington Group, and the Indiana Artists Club and has work permanently located in the Indianapolis Museum of Art, the National Museum in Washington, D.C., the Irvington Historical Society in Indianapolis, and in Indianapolis Public Schools. He died on September 9, 1957 in Brown City, Indiana.


Encyclopedia of Indianapolis, edited by David J. Bodenhamer and Robert G. Barrows, (Bloomington, IN:  Indiana University Press, 1994), 1128. (accessed 7 September 2010).

Newton, Judith Vale and Carol Weiss, A Grand Tradition:  The Art and Artists of the Hoosier Salon, 1925-1990 (Indianapolis, IN:  Hoosier Salon Patrons Association, 1993), 419.

Scope and Content Note:

This collection consists of the sketch and essay features by Frederick Polley that appeared in the Indianapolis Star from 1923-1946.  These features often illustrated an Indiana landmark with commentary by Polley on the beauty or importance of the area.  The landmarks that Polley featured were statewide and usually included town squares, courthouses, churches, schools, city streets, covered bridges, and pastoral scenes.  Also included with the Indiana landmarks can be found features covering areas in Washington, D.C., Provincetown, Massachusetts, Estes Park, Colorado, Charleston, South Carolina, and other scenic cities and places around the United States.  Some exceptions to Polley’s illustration of landmarks occur on dates such as Christmas and Easter when more generic themes or illustrations are used.  These materials are arranged chronologically by year.

Photocopying Policy:

Manuscript materials CANNOT be photocopied or digitized in their entirety. Photocopies and/or digital images cannot exceed 25% of a collection or a folder within a collection. In some cases, photocopying may not be permitted due to the condition of the item. Check with a Manuscript Librarian for other options.

Box and Folder Listing:

Box 1.  Sketch and Essay Feature by Frederick Polley

1. 1923
2. 1924
3. 1925
4. 1926
5. 1927
6. 1928
7. 1929
8. 1930
9. 1931
10. 1932
11. 1933
12. 1934
13. 1935
14. 1936
15. 1937
16. 1938
17. 1939
18. 1940
19. 1941
20. 1942
21. 1943
22. 1944
23 1945
24. 1946
25. No Date

Collection Information

Size of Collection: 1 box, 25 folders
Collection Dates: 1923-1946, including unknown dates
Provenance: Unknown
Access : The collection is open for research use
Restrictions: None
Reproduction Rights: Permission to reproduce, exhibit, or publish material in this collection must be obtained from the Manuscript and Rare Books Division, Indiana State Library.
Language: Materials are entirely in English
Alternate Formats: None
Related Holdings: Collection of Frederick Polley Sketches, Indiana State Library, L438, V426