Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979

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Writer, critic; New Canaan, Connecticut. Died 1979.

From the description of James Thrall Soby interview, 1970 July 7. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 220190225

Author, art critic, editor, collector, patron, connoisseur, and MoMA director and trustee.

From the description of James Thrall Soby papers, 1930-1979. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122484551

James Thrall Soby (1906-1979) was a writer and critic from New Canaan, Conn.

From the description of Oral history interview with James Thrall Soby, 1970 July 7 [sound recording]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 495596726

American art critic, curator, collector, director and trustee of the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

From the description of James Thrall Soby papers, 1928-1975 (bulk 1935-1955). (Getty Research Institute). WorldCat record id: 83538474

Biographical/Historical Note

  • 1906: Born December 14 in Hartford, Conn. Son of Charles (in tobacco business) and Anna (Hazlewood) Soby
  • 1923: Educated at Kingswood School
  • 1924: Taft School
  • 1924 - 26 : Attended Williams College
  • 1925: Buys a reproduction of a Maxfield Parrish print
  • 1929: Bought a third interest in Edwin Valentine Mitchell's bookshop in Hartford, Conn.
  • 1931: Worked at Wadsworth Athenaeum
  • 1942: Director of painting and sculpture and member of board of trustees, Museum of Modern Art, New York
  • 1943 - 45 : Assistant director, MoMA
  • 1946 - 68 : Chairman of department of painting, MoMA
  • 1946 - 57 : Author of monthly column of art criticism in Saturday Review of Literature
  • 1950 - 51 : Editor of Magazine of Art, chairman of editorial board, 1951-52.
  • 1952: Married third wife Melissa Wadley (Soby had two previous wives, Mimi and Mary Eleanor [aka Nelly]); children: Peter Allyn
  • 1962: Awarded honorary L.H.D. from Williams College
  • 1968: Vice-president of MoMA
  • 1979: Died January 29 in Norwalk, Conn.

From the guide to the James Thrall Soby papers, 1928-1975, 1935-1955, (Getty Research Institute)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Jeanneret, Marie-Louise. Letter : Geneva, to James Thrall Soby, New Canaan, 1974 April 12. Getty Research Institute
referencedIn Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.). James Thrall Soby bequest. 1979: Archives pamphlet file : miscellaneous uncataloged material. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
creatorOf Hitchcock, Henry Russell, 1903-. Henry-Russell Hitchcock papers, 1919-1987. Archives of American Art
creatorOf Man Ray, 1890-1976. Man Ray letters and album, 1922-1976. Getty Research Institute
creatorOf Shahn, Ben, 1898-1969. Ben Shahn papers, 1879-1990 (bulk 1933-1970). Archives of American Art
creatorOf Trovato, Joseph S., 1912-1983. Joseph S. Trovato papers, [ca. 1945-1980]. Archives of American Art
referencedIn Marguerite Yourcenar papers, 1920-1986. Houghton Library
referencedIn John Mason Brown papers, 1922-1967. Houghton Library
referencedIn Archives pamphlet file : Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979 : miscellaneous uncataloged material. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
creatorOf Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979. James Thrall Soby papers, 1928-1975 (bulk 1935-1955). Getty Research Institute
referencedIn Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.). Early museum history: administrative records, 1930s-1950s. Museum of Modern Art (MOMA)
referencedIn Ribicoff, Belle Krasne, 1924-. Belle Krasne Ribicoff papers, 1942-circa 2010, bulk 1945-2004. Archives of American Art
referencedIn Marguerite Yourcenar additional papers, 1842-1996. Houghton Library
creatorOf Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979. 27 Lewis Street. Connecticut Historical Society
referencedIn Belle Krasne Ribicoff papers, 1942-circa 2010, bulk 1945-2004 Archives of American Art
referencedIn Ben Shahn papers, 1879-1990, bulk 1933-1970 Archives of American Art
creatorOf Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979. James Thrall Soby papers, 1930-1979. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
referencedIn Henry-Russell Hitchcock papers, 1919-1987 Archives of American Art
creatorOf Stamos, Theodoros, 1922-1997. Theodoros Stamos papers, 1922-2007. Archives of American Art
creatorOf Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.). Correspondence with Margaret Naumburg, 1942-1943. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
referencedIn Sachs, Paul J. (Paul Joseph), 1878-1965. Papers, 1903-2005. Harvard University Art Museum
referencedIn Mazo, Sara, 1911-. Oral history, 1993. Metropolitan Museum of Art, Thomas J. Watson Library
creatorOf Miró, Joan, 1893-1983. Letters, 1935-1958. Getty Research Institute
creatorOf Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979,. Oral history interview with James Thrall Soby, 1970 July 7 [sound recording]. Archives of American Art
creatorOf Barr, Alfred Hamilton, 1902-. Alfred Hamilton Barr papers, [ca. 1915-1983]. Archives of American Art
creatorOf James Thrall Soby papers, 1928-1975, 1935-1955 Getty Research Institute
creatorOf Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979. Correspondence from Edward F. Fry, 1968. University of Pennsylvania Library
referencedIn Grace Hartigan Papers, 1942-2006 Syracuse University. Library. Special Collections Research Center
creatorOf Huelsenbeck, Richard, 1892-1974. Letters received and papers relating to Jean Arp, 1935-1964. Getty Research Institute
creatorOf Soby, James Thrall, 1906-1979. James Thrall Soby interview, 1970 July 7. Archives of American Art
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Arp, Jean, 1887-1966 person
associatedWith Bacon, Francis, 1909-1992 person
associatedWith Balthus, 1908-2001 person
associatedWith Barr, Alfred Hamilton, 1902- person
associatedWith Berman, Eugene, 1899- person
associatedWith Berman, Eugene, 1899-1972. person
associatedWith Berman, Leonid, 1896-1976. person
associatedWith Blume, Peter, 1906-1992. person
correspondedWith Brown, John Mason, 1900-1969 person
associatedWith Calder, Alexander, 1898-1976. person
associatedWith Cummings, Paul, person
associatedWith Dalí, Salvador, 1904-1989. person
associatedWith De Chirico, Giorgio, 1888-1978 person
associatedWith Edwin Valentine Mitchell, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Gris, Juan, 1887-1927 person
associatedWith Hartigan, Grace. person
associatedWith Hitchcock, Henry Russell, 1903- person
associatedWith Huelsenbeck, Richard, 1892-1974. person
associatedWith Jeanneret, Marie-Louise. person
associatedWith Krasne Ribicoff, Belle person
associatedWith Leonid, 1896-1976 person
associatedWith Levy, Julien person
associatedWith Levy, Julien. person
associatedWith Magritte, René, 1898-1967. person
associatedWith Magritte, René, 1989-1967 person
associatedWith Man Ray, 1890-1976. person
associatedWith Mazo, Sara, 1911- person
associatedWith Miró, Joan, 1893-1983 person
associatedWith Mitchell, Edwin Valentine, 1890-1960. person
associatedWith Museum of Modern Art (New York, N.Y.) corporateBody
associatedWith Ribicoff, Belle Krasne, 1924- person
associatedWith Rivers, Larry, 1925- person
associatedWith Rivers, Larry, 1925-2002. person
associatedWith Rouault, Georges, 1871-1958. person
associatedWith Sachs, Paul J. (Paul Joseph), 1878-1965. person
associatedWith Sage, Kay person
associatedWith Sage, Kay. person
associatedWith Shahn, Ben, 1898-1969 person
associatedWith Smith, Cedric Ellsworth. person
associatedWith Stamos, Theodoros, 1922-1997. person
associatedWith Tanguy, Yves, 1900-1955. person
associatedWith Tchelitchew, Pavel, 1898-1957. person
associatedWith Trovato, Joseph S., 1912-1983. person
correspondedWith Yourcenar, Marguerite. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
United States
Connecticut--New Canaan
Connecticut--New Canaan
Connecticut--Hartford
New York (State)--New York
Subject
Neoromanticism (Art movement)
Art, Modern
Art, Modern
Booksellers and bookselling
Publishers and publishing
Art, American
Art
Art
Art critics
Art critics
Art critics
Art critics
Art historians as collectors
Art historians as collectors
Art museum directors
Art museum directors
Art museum directors, United States
Art museums
Art patrons
Art patrons
Authors
Occupation
Activity

Person

Birth 1906-12-14

Death 1979-01-29

Male

Americans

English

Information

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SNAC ID: 75673700