Discovering the Whitefriars Collection

Discovering the Whitefriars Collection

Intern Nicole Monjeau works on a Whitefriars cartoon, 2015For centuries, James Powell and Sons —popularly known as Whitefriars — was among England’s most prominent glass companies. When the company closed its stained glass business in 1973 and the rest of the company in 1980, its archives were acquired by the Victoria and Albert and the Museum of London. In 2008, the Museum of London gifted 1,800 rolls of Whitefriars stained glass cartoons to the Rakow Research Library. The rolls contain an estimated 10,000 to 15,000 items that document the making of hundreds of stained glass installations in over 30 countries.

Discovering the Whitefriars Collection is a project to conserve, digitize, and make accessible the Rakow Library’s collection of Whitefriars stained glass cartoons. It is a collaborative effort between the Rakow Library, the Museum of London, and West Lake Conservators. The project goals are three-fold: select rolls to be preserved and digitized; preserve, test, and evaluate those rolls; develop a website for the digitized works that unites the cartoons with other digitized Whitefriars collections, crowdsourced photos of the stained glass windows, and information about the installation sites.

Projected Outcomes

  • Study collection of conserved stained glass cartoons
  • Whitefriars website
  • Educational programming and pop-up exhibitions

Project news

Partners & Funding

The first year of this project was supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services’ National Leadership Grant for Libraries (#LG-55-14-0110-14).

Read More

This post comes from Ilaria Camerini and Erin Fitterer, Rakow Library interns during the summer of 2018 working on the conservation of Library collections, including the Whitefriars stained glass cartoon collection. Read more about this project and the collection in previous posts. Ilaria and Erin... more
Ilaria Camerini is excited to spend her summer here in Corning, New York. To this resident of Rome, Italy, working abroad “means having the possibility to share ideas and experiences with colleagues from different countries.” She will join 12 other interns who come from across the United States to... more
This post comes from Colette Peavy and Pascual Ruiz Segura, Rakow Research Library interns working on the conservation of the Whitefriars stained glass cartoon collection over the summer of 2017, in conjunction with West Lake Conservators. Read more about this project and the collection in previous... more