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The collection is comprised mostly of letters to silent film actress and painter Wilna Hervey and her life-long companion painter Nan Mason from friends, colleagues, and Mason's father, Dan Mason, also a silent film actor. Also found are biographical materials, personal photographs and snapshots, Hervey's handwritten memoirs, as well as twelve folders of Dan Mason's papers.
Wilna Hervey and Nan Mason papers, circa 1920-1978. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Wilna Hervey (1894-1979) was a silent film actress and painter in San Francisco, Calif. and Woodstock, N.Y. Nan Mason (1896-1982) was a painter and photographer from New York, N.Y. and the daughter of Dan Mason, a silent film actor who worked with Hervey. Hervey was most known for her role as Katrinka in the film adaptations of the Toonerville Trolley cartoon. In the 1960s, Hervey achieved success as an enamel painter. Mason became well known as a painter and photographer. Hervey and Mason were life partners.
Donated in 2008 by Daniel Gelfand, a friend of Wilna Hervey and Nan Mason.
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001