Farnsworth Shakespeare Prints


View the Digital Prints in DLynx


The collector of the prints in this collection was William Appleton Drown (1836-1890) of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was a manufacturer of umbrellas and parasols, and spent part of each year in Europe buying silks in France and ivory, porcelain, and carved wood in Switzerland. His love of Shakespeare′s words and great thoughts grew into a study of Shakespearian actors. During his travels in Europe, Drown acquired an extensive collection of prints from engravings relating to Shakespeare and his plays. 

The prints were inherited by his granddaughter, Elizabeth Phelps Farnsworth, wife of Southwestern At Memphis Trustee Sidney W. Farnsworth, of Memphis, Tennessee (both pictured below). In 1953, Mrs. Farnsworth gave the prints as a gift to the College, which has stored the prints in Special Collections. Digitization of the prints began in Fall 2009 by a Rhodes Student working on a history internship. The project was completed in the Summer of 2011 by Barret Library Staff under the direction of the College Archivist.