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Harvard University Library Notes / March 2007 / No. 1336
Randall Papers Donated to HUAM
The Harvard University Art Museums (HUAM) Archives has received a gift from Lilian M. C. Randall of the papers of her late husband, the scholar and museum curator and director Richard Harding Randall, Jr.
Randall's interests varied widely, but he is best known for his work with medieval ivory carvings, arms and armor, and European and American decorative arts. He wrote extensively, publishing over 100 articles and books on topics ranging from the furniture of H. H. Richardson to medieval ivory crosses to Chinese porcelains.
Born in 1926 in Baltimore, Randall completed his secondary education at the Pomfret School in Connecticut. In Europe during the Second World War, Randall was exposed for the first time to the great works of Western art, and his career path was established.
After completing his studies at Princeton and Harvard, he served as a curator at The Cloisters, the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, and the Walters Art Gallery beforebeing appointed director of the Walters in 1965.
The papers now in the Art Museums' Archives include drafts of Randall's writings, hundreds of photographs and slides of works of art, and "The Museum Observed," an unpublished autobiographical work documenting his experiences as a museum curator and director. Materials documenting Randall's personal life include photographs and other biographical information; a scrapbook of his time in the Army; and humorous stories, poems, and tributes to his friends and colleagues.