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Wayman Adams collection

 Collection — Folder: S1245
Identifier: S1245

Scope and Contents

The collection includes 11 original, signed linocut (linoleum block) greeting cards made by Wayman Adams, 10 of which are Christmas cards from 1924 to 1933. The last is a New Year's card from 1935. Most of the cards depict, Adams' son, Wayman "Snig" Adams, Jr. The collection also includes a photograph of Wayman Adams and Frank Atkins, shore captain of the schooner Regina, in the doorway of Booth Tarkington’s boat house on the Kennebunk River in Maine.


  • 1924-1935

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Legal title, copyright, and literary rights reside with Rare Books and Manuscripts, Indiana State Library, Indianapolis, IN. All requests to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to Rare Books and Manuscripts.

Biographical Note

Wayman Elbridge Adams was an American painter, born on September 23, 1883, on a farm in Muncie, Indiana, to Nelson Perry Adams and Mary Elizabeth (Justice) Adams. Adams, who received no formal education beyond grade school, was taught to paint animals by his father, an amateur artist. As a young man, Wayman worked as a manager in Louisville, Kentucky, and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. At the age of 21, he moved to Indianapolis, Indiana, and enrolled in the John Herron Art Institute where he studied under William Forsythe. As an art student, Wayman was able to travel to Europe, where he met Margaret Boroughs, an art student from Texas, who he married in 1918. The couple had a son, Wayman, Jr., who often served as a model for his father’s artwork. Wayman Adams accepted numerous commissioned to paint portraits of American political figures, including 6 Indiana governors and Presidents Harding, Coolidge, and Hoover, as well as Hoosier poet James Whitcomb Riley and many other prominent figures. Adams died in Austin, Texas on April 9, 1959.


Blanton, Joseph E., and Kendall Curlee. "Wayman Adams." In Handbook of Texas Online. Accessed December 22, 2017. "Wayman Elbridge Adams." Find a Grave Index. Accessed December 22, 2017.

Fine Estate Art. "Wayman E. Adams." Accessed December 22, 2017.

Indiana Historical Bureau. "Indiana Governor Portrait Artist: Wayman Adams (1883-1959). Accessed December 22, 2017.


0.01 Cubic Feet (1 folder)

Language of Materials



This collection is arranged chronologically.

Custodial History

This collection was received by Rare Books and Manuscripts as a records transfer from an Indiana Collection on 2017/01/31.


No further additions are expected.

Processing Information

Collection processing completed 2017/04/27 by Linda Gellert. EAD finding aid created 2017/04/27 by Linda Gellert. EAD finding aid revised 2017/12/22 by Brittany Kropf.
Wayman Adams collection
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
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Repository Details

Part of the Rare Books and Manuscripts Repository

140 North Senate Avenue
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204 U.S.A.